Michigan versus Notre Dame is a classic rivalry.
It’s also been one that been pretty even over the years, with Michigan holding a 24-17-1 lead overall in the series. U-M won the first eight meetings from 1887-1908, so since then it’s been almost exactly even.
The Fighting Irish enter this year’s contest ranked No. 7 in the country, making it the second straight week Michigan will have faced the nation’s No. 7 team after Penn State last Saturday. The betting line has dropped to even after Michigan started out as a slight favorite.
The two programs have only played once during Jim Harbaugh’s tenure, and that game came last season in the opener. This time around, the Wolverines get the contest at home. That’s a big deal, as Michigan has won four in a row against Notre Dame in Ann Arbor. The last time Notre Dame won at the Big House was in 2005.
Let’s take a look back a the three most recent games between Michigan and Notre Dame:
2018: Notre Dame 24, Michigan 17 in South Bend
This game wasn’t as close as the score indicated, as the Wolverines scored a late touchdown to draw it within one score. The big problem in this game was Notre Dame quarterback Brandon Wimbush, who only threw for 170 yards and a touchdown, but was also effective on the ground, rushing for 59 yards.
Early season problems slowed the Michigan offense in Shea Patterson’s first game with the team. He completed 20-of-30 throws for 227 yards and an interception, he also lost a fumble on the game’s final possession when Michigan had a chance to tie the game up with a minute left.
On the ground, Karan Higdon had 72 yards and a score.
Ambry Thomas recorded a kickoff return touchdown late in the second quarter, bringing the score to 21-10 at halftime.
2014: Notre Dame 31, Michigan 0 in South Bend
This was an absolute nightmare for the Wolverines who were thrashed from start to finish. To make matters worse, this was the final game before the series went on a hiatus that lasted for four years.
Michigan turned the ball over four times and Notre Dame took a 21-0 lead into halftime.
No Michigan rusher got past 30 yards. Devin Funchess was the lone bright spot, catching nine passes for 107 yards. Everett Golson torched the U-M defense for three touchdown passes, including one to Will Fuller.
2013: Michigan 41, Notre Dame 30 in Ann Arbor
Michigan never trailed and held a two-score lead for most of the game, but Notre Dame did its best to keep pace and make things interesting. A fourth quarter field goal made it a four-point game before Michigan closed the game out with a Devin Gardner touchdown pass.
Gardner threw for four touchdowns and ran for one more, while receiver Jeremy Gallon caught eight balls for 184 yards and three scores. TJ Jones was Notre Dame’s leading wideout, with 94 yards and a touchdown.