Blue and Gold Illustrated

Nov. 2, 2015 Issue

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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had eluded him. Two, was to stick it to Notre Dame for its NBC deal. Of course, it didn't take long for other schools to start investigating their own potential individual television deals, but they soon realized Notre Dame was the only one that could do so with such na- tional appeal. Or as the headline in Sports Illustrated read: "We're Notre Dame. And You're Not." EPILOGUE Twenty-five years later, with Notre Dame and NBC contract extended through 2025, it can be amusing to look at some of the original ideas about it. Back then, almost every home game was expected to kick off at the "uni- form" 1:30 p.m. Today, 3:30 p.m. is the earliest start, and most of the marquee home games, including Texas and USC this year, have been moved to night. That's not even including the addition of the Shamrock Series in 2009, also tele- cast at night as an NBC "home game" at an off site location. Back then, Notre Dame Stadium seated only 59,075, so the high-ticket demand was expected to be "eased" with the guaranteed viewing of every home game on NBC. By 1997, Notre Dame Stadium ex- panded beyond 80,000 seats, and even more bells and whistles are in place with the Campus Crossroads Project to be completed in the summer of 2017. Meanwhile, this year 's Shamrock Series game at Boston's Fenway Park versus Boston College (Nov. 21) will be the first Irish football telecast ever to be broadcast on NBC Sports Network, a cable derivative of NBC. Times and viewpoints change. The Notre Dame-NBC union over the past 25 years has reflected it. ✦ NBC Through The Years 7 Cameras used to cover Notre Dame's first game on NBC, Sept. 7, 1991 versus Indiana. This year, there are 24 cameras used during a telecast. 16 Household rating for the highest rated Notre Dame football game on NBC, the epic Nov. 13, 1993 clash in which the No. 2-ranked Fighting Irish defeated No. 1 and seven-point favorite Florida State, 31-24. 22 Different play-by-play announcers, color men and sideline reporters who have worked Notre Dame home games on NBC. The original crew in 1991 had Dick Enberg (play-by-play), Bill Walsh (color) and John Dockery (sideline reporter). The longest stint was current USC athletics director Pat Haden, who was the color man from 1998-2009. 105 Crew members working for NBC on a Notre Dame game day. It's not merely about the two an- nouncers in the booth. 153 Games telecast by NBC prior to this past weekend's Notre Dame-USC showdown. The Fighting Irish record in those games was 108-44-1 (.709). However, during that time, the Irish have finished unbeaten at home, or on NBC only twice: 6-0 in 1998 and 7-0 in 2012 when including the Shamrock Series game held in Chicago. 6,300 Notre Dame undergraduate students who have received nearly $80 million in aid from revenue generated through the NBC contract. 4.16 Million was the average viewership for Notre Dame football broadcasts on NBC from 1991-2014.

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