1966 Notre Dame vs. Michigan State football game

The 1966 Notre Dame vs. Michigan State football game is considered among the most significant and most controversial games in college football history played between Michigan State and Notre Dame. The match was played in Michigan State’s Spartan Stadium on November 19, 1966. Michigan State entered the contest 9—0 and ranked No. 2, while Notre Dame entered 8—0 and rated No. 1. Notre Dame elected not to try to find a score over the final series. Notre Dame went on to win or share the national title in fourteen polls (including both AP and UPI); Michigan State shared or won in three minor surveys, and Alabama, who finished with all the only undefeated and untied album, won 2 small polls.
Notre Dame, which had won a national championship in 1964 (non consensus), ranked No. 1 both AP and Coaches’ polls. Defending National Champion Michigan State, who’d finished the 1965 year No. 1 in the UPI Coaches’ survey, but was upset by UCLA in the Rose Bowl the previous year, entered the match ranked No. 2 in the polls. The Fighting Irish, whose bid for a national championship two years earlier was snuffed out by USC, were hungry, although the Spartans had background and home-field advantage on their side. This was the very first time in 20 years a school football matchup was awarded the»Game of the Century» label by the national media, and ABC had the nation’s audiences in its clasp, with equal portions Notre Dame fans and Michigan State fans. It was the very first time in the 30-year history of this AP poll the No. 1 team played with the No. 2 team. The Spartans had conquered Notre Dame the previous year 12—3 holding Notre Dame to minus-12 yards rushing.
A fortuitous quirk in scheduling attracted these 2 teams together late in the season. They weren’t even supposed to meet when the 1966 programs were drawn up. Michigan State had only nine matches scheduled (even though they had been permitted to have ten) while Notre Dame was originally scheduled to play Iowa that week, as had been the custom since 1945. But in 1960, the Hawkeyes abruptly dropped the Irish out of their program, from 1964 onward. Michigan State was available and agreed to return to Notre Dame’s program in 1965—66.
The game was not shown on TV. Each team was allotted one nationwide television appearance and also two regional television appearances every year. Notre Dame had used their national TV slot at the season opening game against Purdue. ABC executives did not want to demonstrate the game everywhere but the regional area, but pressure from the West Coast and the South (to the tune of 50,000 letters) made ABC air the game on tape delay. ABC relented and blacked out the Michigan State-Notre Dame game in just two countries (reportedly North Dakota and South Dakota), therefore it might technically be called a regional broadcast. It would also be the first time that a college football game was broadcast to Hawaii and also to U.S. troops in Vietnam. [5] The official attendance was declared at 80,011 (111% capacity) and has been the most attended match in Michigan State football history at the time (the present record is 80,401 on Sept. 22, 1990 vs. Notre Dame).
Notre Dame was coached by Ara Parseghian and Michigan State was coached by Duffy Daugherty, both college legends.
A lot of the ABC telecast footage resides. The second half is present in its entirety, as do both scoring forces beginning in the next quarter (Michigan State’s field goal and Notre Dame’s touchdown).
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