Historic Navy-Notre Dame Football Rivalry Survives Conference Realignment

LANDOVER, Maryland–Navy???s Athletic Director Chet Gladchuk seems to have been prescient when he struck an agreement with his then-counterpart Kevin White years ago to keep the academy???s football rivalry with Notre Dame intact through the 2026 season to guarantee the schools will play each other for 100 consecutive seasons.

In a new era of conference realignment in college football, the Navy-Notre Dame rivalry is one that the officials of both schools seem intent on keeping while other traditional match-ups are scuttled across the country. The Naval Academy also is aided financially in its series with Notre Dame through a CBS television contract for the games hosted by Navy in 2016 and 2018, as well as this year???s contest on Nov. 1.

The shuffling of conference affiliations has come at the expense of a number of customary annual tilts that include Nebraska-Oklahoma, Texas-Texas A&M and Kansas-Missouri. Each of those yearly clashes ended when one of those pairs of teams switched to a new conference.

The Navy-Notre Dame football game on Nov. 1 became the 88th consecutive annual clash between the two elite academic schools to rank as the longest-running inter-sectional rivalry in the country. The neutral site venue at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland, just 24 miles from Navy???s Annapolis home offered a seating capacity of 79,000, more than double the 34,000 seats at the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

Read the rest of Paul Dykewicz’s column.