1966 Notre Dame vs. Michigan State football game


The 1966 Notre Dame vs. Michigan State football match is regarded as among the most significant and most controversial games in college football history played between Michigan State and Notre Dame. The game has been played in Michigan State’s Spartan Stadium on November 19, 1966. Michigan State entered the competition 9–0 ranked No. 2, while Notre Dame entered 8–0 and rated No. 1. Notre Dame elected not to try to find a score on the final series; consequently, the game finished in a 10–10 tie. Notre Dame went on to acquire or share the national title in fourteen polls (such as both AP and UPI); Michigan State shared or won in three small surveys, and Alabama, who ended with the only undefeated and untied record, won 2 small polls.
Notre Dame, which had last won a national championship in 1964 (non consensus), rated No. 1 both AP and Coaches’ polls. Defending National Champion Michigan State, who’d completed the 1965 year No. 1 in the UPI Coaches’ poll, but was upset by UCLA in the Rose Bowl the previous calendar year, entered the game ranked No. 2 in the polls. The Fighting Irish, whose bid for a national championship two decades earlier had been snuffed out by USC, were hungry, while the Spartans had history and home-field edge in their side. This was the very first time in 20 years that a college football matchup was given the”Game of the Century” tag by the national press, and ABC had the country’s audiences in its clasp, with equal parts Notre Dame lovers and Michigan State fans. This was the very first time in the 30-year history of the AP poll that the No. 1 group played the No. 2 team. The Spartans had defeated Notre Dame the previous year 12–3 holding Notre Dame to minus-12 yards rushing.
A fortuitous quirk in scheduling brought these two teams together late in the season. When the 1966 programs were drawn up they were not even supposed to meet. Michigan State had just nine matches scheduled (even though they had been allowed to possess eight ) while Notre Dame was initially scheduled to play Iowa that week, as had been the custom since 1945. However, in 1960, the Hawkeyes suddenly dropped the Irish out of their program, from 1964 onward. Michigan State was accessible and agreed to return to Notre Dame’s program in 1965–66.
The match wasn’t shown live on TV. Each team has been allotted one national television appearance and 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 even want to show the match everywhere but the regional area, but pressure in 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 from the Michigan State-Notre Dame game in two states (allegedly North Dakota and South Dakota), therefore it might theoretically be called a regional broadcast. It would also be the first time that a school football game was broadcast to Hawaii and also to U.S. troops in Vietnam. [5] The official attendance was declared at 80,011 (111% potential ) and has been the most attended match in Michigan State football history at the time (the current record is 80,401 on Sept. 22, 1990 vs. Notre Dame).
Notre Dame was educated by Ara Parseghian and Michigan State was coached by Duffy Daugherty, both college legends.
Much of the ABC telecast footage resides. The second half exists in its entirety, as do both scoring forces beginning in the second quarter (Michigan State’s field goal and Notre Dame’s touchdown).

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