NBC has been the home of Notre Dame football home games for the past 22 seasons. It will remain the home of Notre Dame football home games for another 13 after the two announced last week that they renewed the one of kind deal through the 2025 season.
Notre Dame and NBC’s deal was set to expire after the 2015 season, but on the heels of Notre Dame’s first undefeated regular season in more than two decades, the two have decided to continue a marriage that has allowed every Notre Dame fan with basic cable to catch every home game since 1991 without the need for any special cable packages.
That same marriage has also been the source of frequent complaints from opposing fans who want to see Notre Dame join a conference. Based on this latest deal, those people are going to continue to complain for at least the next 13 years.
The NBC broadcast has undergone a lot of changes over the last few years with Mike Mayock taking over color commentary duties from Pat Hayden when he took the role of Athletic Director at his alma mater, USC. Dan Hicks just replaced Tom Hammond as the play by play commentator starting with this past weekend’s Blue-Gold game.
In reent years NBC has put a renewed focus on the partnership with Notre Dame by airing special programming such as this past weekend’s Strong and True hour long special recapping Notre Dame’s entire spring practice on their new NBC Sports Network. Last season NBC Sports Network also aired a special on the Irish’s undefeated season prior to Notre Dame’s appearance in the national championship game.
Notre Dame fans frequently complain about the length of commercials during NBC games, but in reality, there isn’t much to complain about. The deal with NBC allows Notre Dame to maintain it’s football independence and fans to see every single home game on a national broadcast without having to worry about regional coverage or anything else of the like.
Notre Dame’s recent success on the field likely sped up negotiations here since the deal was not set to expire for another three seasons. Viewership was way up last year as Notre Dame navigated the regular season undefeated. With USC and Oklahoma set to visit South Bend, NBC won’t be hurting for ratings again this year.