Notre Dame Football: Current NBC contract should be the last one

(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) /

Notre Dame football is currently the only school with a national TV contract, and the one they’re in should be the last because it inhibits sustained winning.

The revenue generated from the NBC national television deal is good for non-athletes at the University of Notre Dame. According to the Associated Press in 2013, it was used to help the non-athlete financial aid.

However, for the long-term success of the football program, it’s actually terrible. The contract allows Notre Dame to maintain football independence —  the real reason they can’t succeed long-term and have instead cycled through coaches.

The fact of the matter is, that, as long as they remain independent, it doesn’t matter who the coach is. They may be successful here an there, but you won’t be able to have consistent success like Alabama and what Clemson is becoming while remaining independent. The root of that issue lies in the scheduling, which is, at least to some degree, a hostage to the limelight.

Notre Dame’s marquee tv contract demands big games every week. Too many tough foes are going to keep the Irish outside of the College Football Playoff conversation for the forseeable future. Joining a conference help that problem. Just look at what Stanford has accomplished under David Shaw.

Despite Stanford’s stringent academic standards, they’re able to consistently put up 10-win seasons and make it to major bowl games. Under Shaw, they’ve had five 10-win seasons in seven years, and they’ve been to the Fiesta Bowl once and three Rose Bowls — with a 2-2 record. Part of the reason for Stanford’s success is getting to feast on also-rans of the Pac-12. Every conference has them.

Stanford gets to play teams like Oregon State and Cal every season. In 2018 they play both of those squads, Arizona State and UC Davis.

Notre Dame never schedules FCS schools. Even if they stuck to that philosophy while in a conference they’d be rewarded by the CFP committee come rankings time.

Next. 2018 game-by-game predictions for Notre Dame. dark

While the endowment has helped plenty of students along the way, from a football standpoint, Notre Dame want to have their cake and eat it too. Unfortunately, you can’t. So, as long as the national TV deal is in place, they won’t be joining a conference, won’t consistently win, and won’t fight their way back to national prominence.