NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The University of Notre Dame and The Ohio State University, featuring two of the most storied traditions in college football, have agreed to a two-year, home-and-home football series beginning in 2022.
Notre Dame and Ohio State will play Sept. 3, 2022, at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, and Sept. 23, 2023, at Notre Dame Stadium. These two contests will mark the first regular-season meetings between the Irish and Buckeyes since a two-game series in 1995 and 1996.
"I am excited we are able once again to bring these two programs together on the football field," says Notre Dame vice president and athletics director Jack Swarbrick. "Football games between Notre Dame and Ohio State make great sense from a strength-of-schedule standpoint. In addition, with (Ohio State athletics director) Gene Smith having both played and coached football at Notre Dame--and with (Ohio State head coach) Urban Meyer having served as an assistant football coach at Notre Dame--there are some obvious, high-profile connections between our two institutions."
Meyer, in fact, was a first-year Notre Dame assistant coach on Lou Holtz's staff in 1996 when the two teams last played during the regular season.
Notre Dame and Ohio State have played on five previous occasions, with the Buckeyes leading the series 3-2. Ohio State earned a 34-20 victory in the schools' most recent meeting at the 2006 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. Notre Dame and Ohio State played home-and-home contests in 1935 (in Columbus) and 1936 (at Notre Dame), as well as 1995 (Columbus) and 1996 (Notre Dame).
Nearly 80 years have passed since the first meeting between Notre Dame and Ohio State, and that 1935 game still is considered one of the earliest in the "game of the century" category and one of the great victories in Irish football history. Notre Dame staged a remarkable fourth-quarter comeback in Columbus to defeat the powerful and heavily-favored Buckeyes 18-13 in Ohio State's only loss that year. The Irish also won in 1936 by a 7-2 count, but Ohio State has captured each of the last three games in the series (45-26 in 1995, 29-16 in 1996 and then in the 2006 Fiesta Bowl).
"Any time you talk about Notre Dame and Ohio State meeting in a football game, that event automatically is going to have huge national significance," says Irish head coach Brian Kelly. "For fans and alumni of the two schools, not to mention college football fans in general, these games will be great attractions."
The two institutions also share in a scholarship fund that benefits students from the state of Ohio who attend either Notre Dame or Ohio State. The Joyce Scholars program, funded by the Glenna R. Joyce Trust Fund, provides four-year full scholarships to outstanding students from 115 central Ohio high schools (within seven counties) who attend either Notre Dame or Ohio State. The Joyce Scholar program began in 1961.