Pinstripe: Notre Dame vs. Rutgers
Notre Dame has accepted a bid to the New Era Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium, the school announced Saturday.
The Fighting Irish will play in the Dec. 28 game in New York against Rutgers (6-6), which accepted the other bid after beating South Florida on Saturday night, coach Kyle Flood said.
"Quite simply, we are thrilled to bring our football program to the New Era Pinstripe Bowl," Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said. "We were privileged to play in New York City and Yankee Stadium in 2010. The treatment our University received from the Steinbrenner family, the New York Yankees and the entire organization was unlike anything we've experienced in my tenure at Notre Dame."
CBSSports.com earlier reported Notre Dame's decision.Rutgers' victory against USF likely will send Houston (8-4) to the BBVA Compass Bowl in Birmingham, Ala., Jan. 4 against an SEC opponent.
The Fighting Irish were left without a pre-arranged bowl destination this season. Notre Dame's final choice came down to the Hawaii Bowl or the Pinstripe Bowl. The Poinsettia Bowl in San Diego also was a possibility.
Notre Dame (8-4) regularly tries to play games in the New York area, where it has a large following. The Irish played Army in a regular-season game at Yankee Stadium in 2010, the first college football game at the new stadium. The Irish are 16-6-3 in games at both Yankee Stadiums.
Notre Dame will play Syracuse next season at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
Notre Dame didn't have a contractual tie-in with any bowls this season, so in a sense it was BCS or bust. The Irish were left to wait for spots to open in third-tier games. The Big 12 didn't have enough bowl-eligible teams to fill its spot in the Pinstripe Bowl.
The Pinstripe Bowl becomes a Big Ten-Atlantic Coast Conference game starting in 2014. Notre Dame joins the ACC next season, though not for football. It will have access to the ACC's bowl lineup.
Pinstripe Bowl executive director Mark Holtzman said organizers were thrilled to have the Irish.
"No two organizations in the history of American sport are more closely intertwined with such a rich and wonderful history as the New York Yankees and Notre Dame," he said.
Information from ESPN's Brett McMurphy and The Associated Press was used in this report.