SOUTH BEND, Ind. — A piece of Notre Dame football history will be coming to an end on Saturday afternoon barring some last-minute miracle of a huge walk-up crowd.
When Notre Dame (7-2) and Navy (7-1) clash for the 93rd consecutive season — the Notre Dame home sellout streak will end at 273 games.
It’s the second-longest in NCAA history, with Nebraska’s run of 373 games at No. 1 and still active heading into Saturday’s match up with Wisconsin.
“It was never sort of important to me to keep it alive, but I understand why other people thought so,” said Jack Swarbrick, Notre Dames’s athletic director since 2008. “It’s a point of distinction to a lot of people and our fans.”
Fans have to go back to the fall of 1973 to find the last home game that wasn’t a sell-out, but there have been plenty of reasons why today’s game vs the Midshipmen will have a lot of empty seats.
One belief is that is Notre Dame simply has priced itself out of comfortably selling out their 80,795 seats anymore.
Swarbrick acknowledged he received plenty of pushback when Notre Dame when to a tiered pricing structure in recent years, changing from a standardized ticket price for all games and all seats to charging more for the big games and the best seats and less for lesser opponents and seats with bad sight angles.
“It was basically an equity argument. The person who sat high in the end zone and the person who sat on the 50-yard line shouldn’t pay the same amount,” Swarbrick said. “We wanted to discount and create a lower price for corner seats and upper seats, and adjust the premium seats in the other direction.”
Notre Dame Stadium has two more home games this November.