Whether or not you consider it a "rivalry," Michigan and Notre Dame holds a spot as one of the best matchups in the history of college football, that began back in 1888.
Two schools out of the Midwest, who seem like they have played each other every season since the inception of college football. They had hiatus, after hiatus over the 20th century, especially between 1944 and 1978, when the two schools stopped playing each other.
Both have a spot in the history of the game. Each have helmets that catch the eyes of millions and each have a well-known fight song. In fact, the Notre Dame Victory March was inspired by "Hail to the Victors." Even if Irish fans don't want to hear that.
Now with the Irish required to play five ACC teams per season on their schedule, we have had to say our week long goodbye to this matchup, in which these two have played 30 times in the past 35 years since the series began again.
Many will argue that Michigan has more to worry about with Ohio State and Notre Dame will survive with their rivalries with USC or Stanford, but with the schools, this matchup always fell in the middle.
Since the series came back in 1978, the current series is at a 14-14-1. Whoever wins the finale at the Big House Saturday can claim bragging rights in this era of the matchup.
Here are some of the best moments from the recent series in no particular order.
2009-2011: Denard's Dominance
Denard Robinson haunted Notre Dame in the first three years at quarterback for the Wolverines. Late game drives tortured the them as Robinson ran and threw all over the Irish. The last second drive at the Big House in 2011 had Irish fans reeling as Notre Dame went to 0-2 and wondering how they blew a 17 point lead in the fourth quarter.
2012: Denard's Last/Worst Stand
This was the last time Robinson would face the Irish, and it was the worst performance. Denard turned it over five times against the Irish and Notre Dame got a great performance out of Manti Te'o and the defense, leading to a 13-6 win. Thus, snapping their losing skid to Big Blue.
2005: Charlie and the Irish Pull Another Upset
With Charlie Weis being named the third coach at Notre Dame in a decade, the Irish were not expected to make a lot of noise. They crashed Pittsburgh's homecoming for new head coach Dave Wanndstedt, doubling up the Panthers 42-21 at Heinz Field.
The following week, a trip to the Big House against No. 3 Michigan saw Brady Quinn taking the No. 20 Irish down the field for two early touchdowns, and Weis' team held on 17-10.
1978: Reunited and It Feels So Good
For the first time since 1943, the Irish and the Wolverines meet in South Bend for a game. Michigan's 21 unanswered points beat a Joe Montana lead Notre Dame team 28-14.
1989: Double Rocket Launch
Rocket Ismail took two consecutive kickoff returns all the way to the house, in the Big House in 1989. The Irish won 24-19 and only threw the ball twice. It was Bo Schembechler's last game against the Irish as well.
1992: The Reggie Brooks "Unconscious" TD Run
The game ended in a tie, but Reggie Brooks was knocked unconscious as he crossed the goal line on a touchdown run.
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