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CMU football announces 2023 matchup with Notre Dame


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Central Michigan running back Jonathan Ward runs the ball near the goal line against North Illinois Nov. 2 at Kelly/Shorts Stadium.

Here come the Irish, and Chippewas. 

Central Michigan Athletic Director Amy Folan announced Thursday that the Chippewa football team will play at Notre Dame on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2023. 

"I am thrilled for our student-athletes to be able to play on a national stage at this iconic venue," Folan said. "Playing such a storied football program, coached by former CMU head coach Brian Kelly, will allow us to engage and celebrate with our CMU family and showcase all the great things happening here at Central Michigan University." 

Kelly coached at CMU from 2004-06, going 19-16 in that span. In 2006, Kelly led the program to its first Mid-American Conference championship since 1994. That year, the team finished 10-4 overall and 7-1 in MAC play. 

When the Chippewas make the trip to Notre Dame Stadium, it will be the program's first time doing so. The 2023 matchup is the first ever between the schools. 

"This is an exciting match-up for our players, university, alumni and fan base," current CMU coach Jim McElwain said. "It is an opportunity to compete against one of the legendary programs in college football."

The game versus the Fighting Irish gives the Chippewas four nonconference games in 2023: Home versus New Hampshire (Sept. 9) and road games at Michigan State (Sept. 2), Notre Dame (Sept. 16) and South Alabama (Sept. 23). 

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