The opening matchup to kick off the 2022 ESPN College GameDay slate is going to be a big one.
The official Twitter account announced today that the show’s crew will be in Columbus on Saturday, September 3 when Ohio State hosts Notre Dame. The game between the Buckeyes and Fighting Irish will be at 6:30 p.m. CT on ABC. Preseason rankings will not be released until August, but most publications have Ohio State projected to be ranked in the top-five and Notre Dame in the top-10.
According to Eleven Warriors, this will be the 21st time that the Buckeyes have hosted ESPN College GameDay since the show’s institution in 1996. Ohio State is 16-4 in those games, including four-straight wins dating back to 2017.
Although they are two of the most storied programs in college football history, the Buckeyes and Fighting Irish have only faced off six times. Notre Dame took back-to-back wins all the way back in 1935 and 1936, while Ohio State won back-to-back matchups in 1995 and 1996. Since then, The Buckeyes have defeated the Fighting Irish in the 2006 and 2016 Fiesta Bowls.
Both Ohio State and Notre Dame played in New Year’s Six bowl games last season and finished ranked in the top 10 with matching 11-2 records. The Buckeyes defeated Utah by a score of 48-45 in the Rose Bowl, while the Fighting Irish lost to Oklahoma State by a score of 37-35 in the Fiesta Bowl.
Familiar – and New – Faces in the Matchup
Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud and wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba will be a must-watch duo this upcoming season, with both already being projected as top-five selections in the 2023 NFL Draft. As for Notre Dame, tight end Michael Mayer and offensive lineman Jarrett Patterson highlight the team’s top returners.
The Fighting Irish will feature a new man as head football coach in 2022, as Marcus Freeman was hired back in December to replace Brian Kelly – who had departed Notre Dame for the LSU job. Freeman actually has a Buckeye background, having played in Columbus from 2004-08, where he was a two-time All-Big Ten linebacker.
Ohio State head football coach Ryan Day has seen unbelievable success since taking over for Urban Meyer in the middle of the 2018 campaign. Day has a 34-4 record, including a 32-2 mark in regular-season games.