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Notre Dame

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Pinstripe Bowl
Notre Dame vs. TBD
When: 12:15 p.m. Dec. 28
Where: Yankee Stadium
TV: ESPN

Pinstripe Bowl bound: Draw of New York too strong for Notre Dame

– Notre Dame is returning to New York

The Irish announced Saturday that they accepted an invitation to play in the Pinstripe Bowl on Dec. 28 in New York’s Yankee Stadium and will play an opponent from the American Athletic Conference. The bowl is scheduled to kickoff at 12:15 p.m.

CBS Sports first reported Friday that the Irish (8-4) would play in the Pinstripe Bowl.

The bowl game will be Notre Dame’s second game in four years at the current Yankee Stadium. The Irish played the first football game in the stadium on Nov. 20, 2010, beating Army 27-3 in front of a stadium-record crowd of 54,251.

Notre Dame is 16-6-3 in Yankee Stadium games

“Quite simply, we are thrilled to bring our football program to the New Era Pinstripe Bowl,” Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. “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.”

Notre Dame seniors, who met with Kelly to discuss bowl options Thursday, had talked about wanting to finish their careers at a warm weather bowl. But with the San Diego-based Poinsettia Bowl, with its $500,000 payout, as the only destination with a clear opening, the pull of returning to a historically pro-Notre Dame site and a bowl with a $1.8 million payout was too much to pass up for the Irish.

Notre Dame will likely play Houston (8-4) or Rutgers (6-6), which became bowl eligible Saturday night with a 31-6 win over South Florida (2-10).

The Irish take the place of a Big 12 team because that conference couldn’t fill its bowl slots. Notre Dame will not have to wait to take an unfilled spot next season when it becomes part of the Atlantic Coast Conference bowl lineup.

“We are thrilled to welcome Notre Dame and its student-athletes, alumni and devoted fan base back to New York City and Yankee Stadium to play in the 2013 New Era Pinstripe Bowl,” said Mark Holtzman, executive director of the Pinstripe Bowl, in a statement. “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.”

tkrausz@jg.net

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