Save this content for laterSave this content on your device for later, even while offline Sign in with FacebookSign in with your Facebook account Close

Air Force to play Michigan in football, basketball; Notre Dame football likely out for 2015

October 23, 2013 Updated: October 23, 2013 at 4:45 pm
0
photo - Air Force running back Cody Getz (28) celebrates his touchdown in the second quarter of an NCAA college football game with Michigan, Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012, in Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP Photo/Tony Ding)
Air Force running back Cody Getz (28) celebrates his touchdown in the second quarter of an NCAA college football game with Michigan, Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012, in Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP Photo/Tony Ding) 

Air Force has added an upcoming game with one of college football's traditional powers, but stands on the brink of losing another.

The academy announced Wednesday that it will play at Michigan on Sept. 16, 2017, a game that will earn the Falcons $1.3 million - the most ever for a "money game" in program history and nearly half a million more than it earned for a trip to the Big House in 2012.

But while Michigan is on the schedule, the 2015 neutral-site game against Notre Dame is very much in doubt.

"Bottom line, I don't think that game is going to go on in the immediate future," Air Force athletic director Hans Mueh said.

The location of the 2015 contest - which was to conclude a four-game series - had never been determined. Dallas and Denver were mentioned as possibilities. The Fighting Irish will be in Colorado Springs this weekend to play the third game in the series at 3 p.m. Saturday.

Long after agreeing to the deal with Air Force, Notre Dame entered into a pact with the Atlantic Coast Conference that provides five games each season. That cut out some of the flexibility in scheduling and has forced the program to rethink prior plans.

"They really love us and want to have a long-term relationship, but right now as you can imagine independents are having a real hard time scheduling," Mueh said. "Even the No. 1 independent, Notre Dame, decided they needed some guaranteed games."

Mueh left open the possibility that the final game would still take place, even if it is not in 2015. He also said there's still a chance the game will be played on schedule and intends to talk with Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick about options this weekend.

If the Falcons do, in fact, lose the game with Notre Dame, the Michigan news certainly comes as a nice consolation prize.

The Wolverines narrowly held off the Falcons 31-25 in 2012, a game that drew a crowd 112,522 - the most people to ever see an Air Force game.

Michigan will not make a return trip to Air Force as part of the agreement.

"It was always going to be a money game," Mueh said. "It would have been neat to have a home-and-home, but to be honest with you between sequestration and starting up this nonprofit corporation and everything else, we need to look at that every once a while to bring some much-needed revenue into this department to sustain what we're trying to do.

"It's great to be wanted."

Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon also included a $100,000 offer for a basketball game in Ann Arbor as part of the package. Mueh said he would leave it up to coach Dave Pilipovich - a former Wolverines assistant - if and when the Falcons would play the game.

Comment Policy
Register to the Colorado Springs Gazette
Register to the Colorado Springs Gazette
Subscribe to the Colorado Springs Gazette

It appears that you value local journalism. Thank you.

Subscribe today for unlimited digital access with 50% fewer ads for a faster browsing experience.

Already a Subscriber? LOGIN HERE

Subscribe to the Colorado Springs Gazette

It appears that you value local journalism. Thank you.

Subscribe today for unlimited digital access with 50% fewer ads for a faster browsing experience.

Subscribe to the Colorado Springs Gazette

Some news is free.
Exceptional journalism takes time, effort and your support.

Already a Subscriber? LOGIN HERE

articles remaining
×
Thank you for your interest in local journalism.
Gain unlimited access, 50% fewer ads and a faster browsing experience.