NCAA: Irish Coach Brian Kelly Says Michigan Not A 'Historic' Rival

Notre Dame Fighting Irish head football coach Brian Kelly said he doesn't consider the rivalry with Michigan as "historic" on Sunday.

Sep 1 2013, 9:53pm CDT | by

NCAA: Irish Coach Brian Kelly Says Michigan Not A 'Historic' Rival
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Notre Dame Fighting Irish head football head coach Brian Kelly doesn't consider the rivalry with the Michigan Wolverines to be historic. 

This was what he said in a conference call on Sunday, per WNDU.com of South Bend, Ind. 

"I really haven't seen it as one of those historic, traditional Notre Dame rivalries. I've seen it as just one of those great football games that Notre Dame has played.

"For me, I've been in Michigan a long time. I've always felt the Notre Dame-Michigan game was a big regional game."

Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune quotes the Notre Dame coach who quips about the similarities between the two student bodies.  

"I would like to think the geographical proximity and certainly from a recruiting standpoint in the Midwest, Notre Dame and Michigan are recruiting kids that are very good students, there are a lot of similarities. I don't think any time off will affect the great rivalry that these two teams have shared." 

The game between the Irish and Wolverines on Saturday in Ann Arbor will be the second-to-the-last before the series be temporarily ceased from 2015-17 as "part of the fallout of Notre Dame's scheduling agreement with the ACC," per CBS Sports' Jerry Hinnen.  

Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbick the move was necessary because the university joined the ACC in most sports, but was still an independent in football. 

However, four months ago, Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke said the Irish are "chickening out" of the rivalry. 

Kelly aired his side on the matter. 

"Everybody knows the challenges we have as an independent when it comes to scheduling. We're a team that a lot of people want to play, including Michigan, obviously, or Brady wouldn't comment in that regard.

"We're trying to do the best we can maintaining our independent status and our relationship with the ACC. We'd like to play everybody. Unfortunately, we can't. There's going to be a little bit of hiatus o the game but we'll work hard to get them back on the schedule." 

 
 
 


Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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