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ND plans for games at night

Anna Boarini | Wednesday, March 21, 2012

After the success of last year’s night game against USC, the Notre Dame football team will add two home night games to the upcoming season. According to a University press release, Notre Dame will host Michigan on September 22 at night, while the game against Miami at Chicago’s Soldier Field will also be held at night.

Mike Seamon, the associate vice president for campus safety, said the game day operations team started to prepare for this season’s night games as soon as they were confirmed.

“We’ll look to build on the successes of last year’s night game, while trying to identify any new opportunities to improve the game day experience,” he said. “Last year, we had additional staff, fire department personnel, medical teams, parking personnel, police, on hand throughout the day and the night to help all the fans and guests.”

Sophomore Kristen Jackson said she is most excited for the night game against Michigan this coming season.

“I’m excited for the Michigan game because my parents went to Michigan for college,” she said.

Sophomore Matt Hayes said he is most excited to watch the Irish play in a large venue in a big city.

“I got to go to the Army game, so I’m really pumped to see us play in a legit stadium at night,” he said.

Seamon also looks forward to another game under the lights.

“I enjoyed seeing the University showcased in prime time on national television,” he said. “The night game provides the University an opportunity to tell its story to an even broader audience.  A game at Notre Dame Stadium under the lights is a pretty special experience.”  

Even though night games are a fan favorite, they are not going to be heavily integrated into future Notre Dame football schedules, senior associate athletic director for media relations John Heisler said.

“For a variety of reasons, the University is not looking for a steady diet of home football night games,” he said. “However the response to the Notre Dame-USC game last year proved favorable and that certainly played a major role in consideration of another home night game for 2012.”

Even though the University does not plan on adding more night games in the future, many students would like to see more on the schedule.

“The energy is just a lot better,” sophomore Noah Rangel said. “You have more time to get into the game.”
Freshman Max Brown also wants to see more games played at night.

“A night game is a really cool experience, he said. “I mean, they already have the lights there.”

Contact Anna Boarini at aboari01@saintmarys.edu