For as long as the Notre Dame Fighting Irish have played football, the schedule has been on their own terms. Being Independent meant they could essentially pick any matchup they wanted, avoid facing a slew of tough conference opponents, and still get all of the perks of being a Power 5 team. That's about to change in 2020.
Every other sport outside of football and men's hockey, which plays in the Big Ten, is part of the ACC. This is a logical fit, but it will be a different challenge than ever before.
Notre Dame Football's Schedule Changes
— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) August 2, 2020
Before the coronavirus pandemic and COVID-19 outbreak put the college football season in serious doubt, Notre Dame had several ACC opponents scheduled with notable non-conference games against the Wisconsin Badgers, USC Trojans, and Navy Midshipmen on the docket. Those three marquee FBS games are officially off.
Instead, the Fighting Irish will play a 10-game ACC football schedule and a non-conference game against the Western Michigan Broncos.
Buckle up, Notre Dame fans. If the Irish want to play in the ACC Championship Game or make the College Football Playoff again, they will have to go through a conference slate for the first time.
2020 Notre Dame Football Schedule
Time to Rally! ??
— Notre Dame Football (@NDFootball) August 6, 2020
Notre Dame's new schedule now features six home games at Notre Dame Stadium and five road games, including a pair at NFL stadiums.
Sept. 12: DUKE BLUE DEVILS (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Sept. 19: WESTERN MICHIGAN BRONCOS (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Sept. 26: at Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC)
Oct. 3: BYE
Oct. 10: FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Oct. 17: LOUISVILLE CARDINALS (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Oct. 24: at Pittsburgh Panthers (Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pa.)
Oct. 31: at Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (Bobby Dodd Stadium, Atlanta, Ga.)
Nov. 7: CLEMSON TIGERS (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Nov. 14: at Boston College Eagles (Alumni Stadium, Chestnut Hill, Mass.)
Nov. 21: BYE
Nov. 27: at North Carolina Tar Heels (Kenan Memorial Stadium, Chapel Hill, NC)
Dec. 5: SYRACUSE ORANGE (Notre Dame, Ind.)
Whether the games are on NBC or ESPN, there's no doubt Notre Dame will need to lock in now maybe more than ever.