ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Michigan and Notre Dame's fading football series seems headed for a break that might last at least a decade.
Both sides aren't discussing the future of the rivalry, according to Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon.
"There haven't been talks and there won't be for a while because we're both scheduled out very far into the future," Brandon said Wednesday in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.
Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick handed Brandon a letter on the field in South Bend, Ind., that cancelled games from 2015 through 2017 about an hour before the storied programs played last year.
Swarbrick wrote in the letter the move was a necessary precaution because the process of meeting its scheduling commitment to the Atlantic Coast Conference had begun, adding the school would like the "great football rivalry" to continue.
Brandon said after the Fighting Irish play at the Big House on Saturday night, it will be a long time before they're back for a football game.
"There's no room for either one of us to add the other until the early 2020s at the earliest," Brandon told The AP. "When they pulled the plug, I was disappointed and I continue to be disappointed because it meant there was going to be a long break.
"It's just unfortunate because we believe it is a national rivalry that is important for both Michigan and Notre Dame."
Messages seeking comment have been left by the AP with Swarbrick this week.
Notre Dame decided last year to join the ACC in every sport except football and hockey, though the football team will play five games a year against league opponents, starting no later than 2015.
By opting out of the contract last year, the Irish made themselves the host — including in 2014 — for two of the final three years of the deal and avoided playing at Michigan Stadium twice during the final three years of the previous contract.
"My job has been to move on with our scheduling," Brandon said. "We've done that by adding Arkansas and Virginia Tech and soon we'll be able to announce another big-branded school will be on future schedules."