Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon went on WTKA 1050 in Ann Arbor last Friday to talk about the Michigan-Alabama game, which was finally made official last week. Brandon talked about why Michigan decided to get involved in this neutral-site game with Alabama and he also discussed how it all came about.
"Very soon after I got the job I started having some conversations with folks internally, and some of our boards of advisors and one of my questions was: how would you feel about the University of Michigan on a very rare but exceptional and special basis playing a game at a neutral site because it affords the ability to create these big matchups, go to really interesting and exciting venues and get on the big stage?
'The feedback I got was very positive and there had been discussions long ago about the Meadowlands when they were opening up the new stadium there and some other things that had been discussed but really didn’t get deep into it. Then when ESPN contacted me and Jerry Jones had an availability of interest the whole thing started to bubble and the next thing you know we got it done."
Brandon later talked about if this game will have an effect on the rivalry with Notre Dame. Currently, Michigan is scheduled to play at Notre Dame in 2012, meaning the Wolverines' schedule not only is tough, but it only has six home games. Brandon didn't say anything definitive about the game, but he made it sound like Michigan and Notre Dame are working toward making a change to the series. A two-year break at some point in the future has been discussed, but originally it wasn't going to happen until later in the decade. Perhaps it could be moved up so Michigan has more flexibility with its schedule in 2012, allowing for an extra home game.