It was announced on Twitter early this morning that the 2020 installment of the Notre Dame vs. Navy rivalry will not be played in Dublin to kick off this season.
With different announcements based upon local governments regarding social distancing at live events and fans having the ability to return to the stands, it makes you wonder will we see other big games change sites to smaller, more accommodating sites.
This is a rivalry that is no stranger to the neutral site as they have played in a variety of different cities, including but are not limited to; San Diego, Jacksonville, Dublin, Baltimore, East Rutherford, and Philadelphia. One stadium that has not been used is the Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, as Navy prefers to move the game to a bigger venue when they are the perceived host. That all changes this season as the 2020 game has been moved to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium for the very first time. This year the stage was set for Dublin, and as an Irish fan who is 50% Irish, this was a week that I was excited to see regardless of if I was going to be in attendance or not.
The two teams have played a total of 93 times and continue to meet annually. Notre Dame has won 77 of those meetings, making some question whether or not it is a true rivalry. As someone who had the privilege to attend the Navy game in South Bend last season, I promise you this is one of those staple games for every Notre Dame fan that you must attend at some point in your life.
Notre Dame won the 2019 installment of this rivalry in South Bend by a score of 52-20, and they haven’t lost to the Naval Academy since 2016 in Jacksonville. Here at Irish On Tap, we have the utmost respect for the Naval Academy, and they are always a competitive matchup. I would assume that this series returns to Ireland in a few seasons when it is safe to do so.