Notre Dame is scheduling neutral-site football games around the country in part to raise its profile — as if it needs to — and its opponents in those games figure to reap the same exposure benefits.
In 2013, Arizona State figures to be such a team.
A deal has not been finalized, an ASU spokesman said on Wednesday, but the schools are negotiating a Oct. 5, 2013, date at the Dallas Cowboys’ new stadium in Arlington, Texas.
The $1 billion facility is scheduled to open in 2009 and have a capacity of 100,000. It will be home to the Cotton Bowl and the 2011 Super Bowl.
The benefits to ASU — which is already scheduled to play the Fighting Irish in 2014 in Tempe and 2017 in South Bend, Ind. — would be many:
• Although Notre Dame’s contract with NBC expires in 2010, the ASU game will probably be nationally televised.
• The contest will be in the middle of fertile Texas recruiting ground.
• With Dallas less than three hours from Phoenix by plane, a large contingent of Sun Devil fans could attend.
• Financially, Notre Dame will make it worth ASU’s while. The dollar number is unavailable, but the Fighting Irish are guaranteeing South Florida $850,000 for a 2011 game in South Bend.
Notre Dame has scheduled Washington State in San Antonio in 2009, Army in Chicago in 2010, undetermined opponents in Orlando, Fla., in 2011 and 2014 and Baylor in New Orleans in 2012.
If the Arlington game is finalized, ASU’s Sept. 14, 2013, date at Colorado might be switched to another year. That contest was signed after the Sun Devils’ South Bend meeting with Notre Dame was moved from 2013 to 2017.
ASU and Notre Dame played a home-and-home series in 1998 and 1999, with the Fighting Irish winning both games.