Tom Smart, Deseret Morning News
PROVO — BYU will play at Notre Dame in 2012 and 2013 as part of a six-game football scheduling agreement between the two schools.
The Cougars will visit the Fighting Irish on Oct. 20, 2012 and Nov. 16, 2013, in South Bend, Ind., the schools announced Wednesday.
Legendary Notre Dame Stadium underwent a major expansion in 1997 and has a current seating capacity of 80,795.
The six-year deal between BYU and Notre Dame was announced on Sept. 1.
The other four games in the series will be played between 2014 and 2020. Two will be played in Provo and the two others will be played in South Bend. Details of those dates will be announced later.
BYU and Notre Dame have played six times, all since 1992. The Irish hold a 4-2 advantage against the Cougars, with four of those games having been played in South Bend and two in Provo. BYU and Notre Dame have split their last four meetings.
The Cougars, who are leaving the Mountain West Conference after this season, and the Irish will comprise two of four programs in the country with independent status.
SPEAKING OF SCHEDULING: BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe continues to work feverishly on independent scheduling. Instead of setting up four non-conference games a year, now he has to schedule 12 non-conference games.
"It's kind of like a two-edged sword. It's exhilarating and it's exciting, but it's hard," Holmoe said. "You take the good and the tough. We've been close on a couple of really good games but they've slipped away. But you can't expect that this late in the game things are going to fall right into place. We still have a couple of games that we might be able to secure that would enhance what currently exists on our schedule."
Earlier this week, BYU announced a four-year deal with Georgia Tech that begins in 2012.
"It's an opportunity now for our program to get to places we haven't been or places where we've been to in the past," Holmoe said. "We're trying to get some very intriguing matchups and balance out our schedule, so we have a schedule that will be respected and give us an opportunity to rise as high as we can in the polls."
2011 SLATE: Holmoe is still putting the finishing touches on the 2011 schedule.
"2011 will get done when it's done," he said. "It's the first year and it's probably the most difficult of all the schedules because we announced it without being done, knowing that most teams are done (scheduling). We're trying to see if teams will come out of scheduled games. That is difficult. We could finish the thing off tomorrow if we wanted to, but it might not be the best schedule we could possibly have. We're trying to put together the best schedule for '11 that we can under the circumstances."
In 2011, BYU is scheduled to play road games at Oregon State, Texas, Hawaii and Louisiana Tech. The Cougars will host Utah, Central Florida, Utah State, New Mexico State, Idaho, and San Jose State.
INJURY UPDATE: Freshman tight end Austin Holt suffered a concussion in practice. He won't be available to play Saturday against Wyoming.
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