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Arizona State AD Takes Shot at Temple over Notre Dame’s Schedule

Jun 5, 2013, 2:25 PM EDT

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The Notre Dame Fighting Irish football program will give up some of its independence in 2014, when it becomes a pseudo-member of the ACC.

Last September, ND announced it was moving its athletic programs from the Big East to the ACC, but as part of the deal, the Irish are now contracted to play five ACC opponents each year. That scheduling change obviously presents a problem considering that Notre Dame, as an independent, books its opponents well in advance.

And since the Irish now have control over only seven of their games each season, as opposed to 12, that means some schools are going to have to get crossed off the list.

Enter Arizona State and its athletic director, Steve Patterson. ASU is one of the schools that’s been slighted by ND’s scheduling change. Though the Sun Devils will still play Notre Dame this year — Oct. 5 at Cowboys Stadium — they were bumped from ND’s 2014 schedule to make room for Florida State.

Of course, Patterson’s been claiming he has a valid contract, which led to these comments, from, on Wednesday:

“Talking to them as recently as two hours ago, we’re still in discussions,” ASU athletic director Steve Patterson told Arizona Sports 620′s Doug and Wolf Tuesday afternoon.

“I think they’re excited about their new TV contract with the ACC, so they think it’s probably not as beneficial to come to Tempe and take on Todd’s team,” Patterson said. “I think they’ve got a football coach who would prefer to play Rice and Temple.

“But we’ll keep talking and see where we can get.”

Well, calling out Brian Kelly is a little better than referring to those “damned Catholics,” right?

Temple opens its season in South Bend on Aug. 31 and will host Notre Dame in Philadelphia at Lincoln Financial Field on Oct. 11, 2014. The Owls wrap up their three-game agreement, originally announced in 2011, with a return visit to South Bend in 2017.

Arizona State, by the way, kicks off its 2013 season against Sacramento State and its 2014 campaign vs. Weber State. You know, some coaches just prefer…

  1. BenE. - Jun 5, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Call me biased (I went to ASU) but ASU may open against Sac State and Weber State, but they also play tough Pac-12 opponents. No one gets more praise while having a cupcake schedule than the Notre Dame football team.

    • Nick Menta - Jun 5, 2013 at 2:55 PM

      I have no horse in this race, but ND had a Top 10 strength of schedule last year and an opp. record of 98-57. ASU was not in the top 50 on multiple lists and their opponents went an even 74-74: //

      • Ian - Jun 5, 2013 at 11:10 PM


      • BenE. - Jun 5, 2013 at 11:36 PM

        Strength of schedule flips back and forth in any given season. Case in point, from what I could find, Notre Dame has also had a softer schedule than ASU 5 of the last 10 seasons. Slipping into the 50s once and 60s once. So, an even 5-5 the last decade. The difference is, ASU doesn’t get massive amounts of praise when they have a weaker schedule.

      • borromini - Jun 6, 2013 at 1:59 AM

        Well I’m not sure what you were looking at but on Team Rankings’ website

        ND had a stronger strength-of-schedule over ASU 7-4 over the past 11 years. Jeff Sagarin and Phil Steele also had the Irish with a stronger schedule over the past 10 years.

        Bottom line…it doesn’t matter what conference you play in…when you schedule FCS schools…it’s just lame. Also, you may have two to three tough opponents in the PAC12, but Colorado, WSU, Cal and Utah clearly make it an overall unimpressive conference schedule.

  2. Alonzo - Jun 5, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    Growing up here, I love Temple. Having gone to ASU, I obviously love them as well. I’ve seen both teams play football, historically the devils have had a much better program. any AD/coach/whatever who wouldn’t want a few “easier” games is a dummy. but no doubt the owls have gotten soo much better in the past few years, hopefully they rock the irish this year and the next.. and come on now, sac and weber state are good programs o.0

    • BenE. - Jun 5, 2013 at 11:37 PM

      Nice, another Sun Devil on the board

      • ifihad10weekstolivestuckinaz - Jun 6, 2013 at 1:05 PM

        I went to Arizona State as well. ’11 I will tell you this… Temple is in a massive rebuilding phase which I have no complaints. But at the end of the Day. Arizona State plays.. USC, Cal, Oregon, Oregon State, UCLA, I understand Sac state and Web state are smaller schools but ASU AD is right….

  3. A.Simon - Jun 5, 2013 at 2:46 PM

    When was the last time Arizona State was competitive in the Pac 10/12?

    • BenE. - Jun 5, 2013 at 2:51 PM

      2007 when they went 10-3 (7-2) and finished 2nd behind USC, but that’s exactly the point. It’s a tough conference. They usually finish in the middle of the pack. 5-5 conference record +/- a win.

      • PAR - Jun 6, 2013 at 12:35 PM

        I like how you are trying to make a case that the PAC-12 is a tough conference because ASU has a tough time winning games in it. Its a tough conference…for ASU. Its a mediocre conference and ASU is a pretty ‘meh’ football program

      • BenE. - Jun 6, 2013 at 12:45 PM

        Nowhere did I insinuate ASU is anything more than a mediocre football program, but the Pac-12 is absolutely a tough conference. USC, Oregon, UCLA, and Stanford are always great. OSU and UA go back and forth. Cal is in a rut but they can’t be counted out most years.

        Keep the ASU hate coming though, guys. Fact is it’s an awesome school with way more sh*t to do there than live and die by the football team anyway.

  4. coatesvillain - Jun 5, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    I understand his frustration, but it seems like Patterson is missing the point.

    I won’t disagree that Arizona State is a much better football program than Temple is. I’d be ridiculous to even broach that topic, but the truth is a Notre Dame game in Philadelphia means more to that school than a trip to Tempe, Arizona would.

    Notre Dame never comes to Philly, and this game will sell out Lincoln Financial Field and would serve as a great recruiting tool into the tri-state area (not that they need the help).

  5. NotCoatesVillain - Jun 5, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    catesvillain- Temple is playing is SouthBend, not the other way around.

    • Another Coatesvillain - Jun 5, 2013 at 3:29 PM

      NotCoatesVillain: Read the article again-
      “Temple opens its season in South Bend on Aug. 31 and will host Notre Dame in Philadelphia at Lincoln Financial Field on Oct. 11, 2014.”

      ND plays ASU this season, but not in 2014.

  6. Chris - Jun 6, 2013 at 6:00 AM

    I think people are making too much of this “must play five ACC games” thing. I mean, they played four current or future ACC teams this past season (Miami, BC, Wake Forest, Pitt).

  7. AMNY - Jun 6, 2013 at 9:14 AM

    Umm.. bumping ASU for Florida State is trying to weaken the schedule?! And ND plays Stanford and USC every year – 2 of the 3-5 marquee programs in the PAC12

  8. BenE. - Jun 6, 2013 at 12:49 PM

    Laughing at all the Arizona State hate on here. Poor Temple guys get a perceived slight from ASU and wig out. Keep hating, the party never stops at ASU, nor does the graduation line.

    • ifihad10weekstolivestuckinaz - Jun 6, 2013 at 1:07 PM

      I went to Arizona State too. Class of 11′ but at the end of the day PAC 12 is a tougher conference. Temple is rebuilding which I respect but at the end of day… ASU plays USC, CAL, Oregon, Oregon State…

    • Nick Menta - Jun 6, 2013 at 7:26 PM

      Most of these comments, from what I can see, have nothing to do with Temple.

  9. PittPanthers - Jun 6, 2013 at 5:15 PM

    Todd Graham sucks


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