Notre Dame’s NBC deal ‘helps ensure’ football independence
Realignment has been ubiquitous in the college football landscape over the last year, though it will not be something happening in South Bend, Indiana.
On Saturday, Notre Dame announced an extension of its media partnership with NBC and streaming content on Peacock, which Fighting Irish athletic director Jack Swarbrick said will keep the storied football program independent.
In a pre-taped interview played on Saturday’s pregame show before Notre Dame took on Wake Forest, Swarbrick addressed the topic.
“Well one of the great things the extension with NBC that we’re announcing today is it helps ensure our independence,” Swarbrick said. “And that is so important to us because it’s the independence platform that allows us to do the unique things we do at Notre Dame athletics. Realignment will continue — it’s not over. But we need to make sure as realignment continues that the interests of the student-athletes are first and foremost.”
Those comments seem to be in line with those with what Swarbrick said this summer on “The Dan Patrick Show” when he blasted realignment as “A complete disaster.”
“I think the decision-making lost its way in terms of the focus on the student-athlete and what’s primarily best for them, but we are where we are,” Swarbrick added then. “We have to try and make it work. I mean, we’ve been pretty vocal in the past month about we need to find a home for Stanford and Cal.
“You can’t have two of the great academic institutions in the world not have a place to play.”
Realignment is set to re-shape college football’s conferences, essentially stripping away the Pac-12 in the process.
As part of the changes, USC and UCLA will be joining the Big Ten, which has historically been a conference populated by schools mostly from the Midwest, which, in theory, would make sense if Notre Dame joined the process.
But Saturday’s announcement should dispel any notions that the Fighting Irish will join a football conference.