Rutgers-Notre Dame canceled over 'home' stadium terms

Updated: April 25, 2008, 11:49 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Rutgers and Notre Dame have called off plans for a six-game home-and-home series starting in 2010, as Rutgers does not wish to play its home games against the Fighting Irish off-campus.

"Rutgers entered into discussions about a possible long-term series with Notre Dame, but at the end of the day both schools could not agree about the site of the games," Rutgers athletic director Bob Mulcahy said in a prepared statement issued by the university. "We feel Rutgers' home games should be played on campus at Rutgers Stadium."

Mulcahy declined additional comment when reached by phone, according to The Star-Ledger of Newark. N.J.

According to a source with knowledge of the situation, the Irish wanted Rutgers' three home games in the series to be played at the new Giants/Jets stadium in the Meadlowlands -- a compromise that Rutgers, which is undertaking a $102 million renovation of Rutgers Stadium, was unwilling to make, according to the report.

Rutgers Stadium will hold about 55,000 fans after the renovation is completed in 2009.

The move comes shortly after Connecticut agreed to a six-game home-and-home series against the Irish, with UConn's "home" games to be played at larger stadiums out of state. That was the result of a compromise with the state legislature requiring the Huskies to play six home games at Rentschler Field -- the construction of which was funded by state taxpayers -- during seasons in which they host Notre Dame.

UConn had tentatively agreed to play a 10-game series with the Irish, with its home games at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., and the new Giants/Jets stadium. But the plan was widely panned by the public and by state lawmakers.

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