A historical look at how ex-Michigan football head coaches fared in their first trip to Notre Dame
ANN ARBOR -- Brady Hoke's coached in Notre Dame Stadium before, but not like this.
The second-year Michigan football coach was on Lloyd Carr's staff when the Wolverines traveled to Notre Dame in 1998 and 2002.
Both of those games, by the way, featured a highly-ranked Michigan team falling to a lesser-ranked Notre Dame team.
Hoke will be looking to stand on the winning sideline for the first time in South Bend, Ind. on Saturday when the 18th-ranked Wolverines visit No. 11 Notre Dame (7:30 p.m., NBC).
Notre Dame Stadium has been a spot of great triumph and disappointment for Michigan football coaches over the years.
Here's a look at how a few former Michigan bosses handled their first visit to Notre Dame as the head man.
Notre Dame 35, Michigan 17
Sept. 13, 2008
Charlie Weis blew his knee out, the weather was a disaster and Michigan turned in a serious clunker with six turnovers in Rich Rodriguez's first visit to South Bend.
Michigan actually had little trouble moving the ball in this one, racking up nearly 400 yards of total offense in just the third game of Rodriguez's tenure. But the six turnovers and seven penalties ruined any shot of a victory.
The Wolverines lost two fumbles and had a failed fourth-down try in the first quarter alone, resulting in 21 unanswered Irish points.
Afterward, Rodriguez said everything would be fine.
"Michigan football will be back," he said at the time. "All the naysayers out there, I'm disappointed but I'm not discouraged. Michigan football will be back."
Three years later, he was gone.
No. 22 Notre Dame 36, No. 5 Michigan 20
Sept. 5, 1998
The beginning of Michigan's national championship hangover.
The Wolverines had two second-half fumbles and one blocked field goal, and a Jarious Jackson-led Notre Dame squad physically handled the line of scrimmage in the second half to lead the Fighting Irish to a major upset of the defending national champs.
Michigan led 13-6 at the break, but was outscored 17-0 in the third quarter -- eventually leading to the team's first 0-1 start in eight years.
Hoke, the team's defensive line coach at the time, recently said he shoulders most of the blame for the 1998 loss to Notre Dame -- as his position group, which returned plenty of playmakers from the 1997 squad, failed to answer the bell against Notre Dame's option attack -- as the Fighting Irish racked up nearly 300 yards on the ground.
No. 1 Notre Dame 28, No. 4 Michigan 24
Sept. 15, 1990
This wasn't just Moeller's first head coaching experience in South Bend, it was his first head coaching experience at Michigan ... period.
In the first game after Bo Schembechler's retirement, a highly-touted Michigan squad was looking to snap a three-game losing streak to Notre Dame.
It didn't happen.
Moeller's bunch led by 10 going into the the fourth quarter, but two Elvis Grbac interceptions opened the door back up for Notre Dame -- and when Rick Mirer found Adrian Jarrell for a touchdown with less than two minutes to play, Moeller was off to an 0-1 start and the Wolverines had suffered four straight losses to Notre Dame.
Moeller did rebound, though, finishing the year 9-3 with a share of the Big Ten title -- his three losses came by a combined six points.
No. 5 Michigan 28, No. 14 Notre Dame 14
Sept. 23, 1978
The first game between Michigan and Notre Dame in 35 years was also Schembechler's first taste of the rivalry.
The game also featured a quarterback matchup of Rick Leach vs. Joe Montana -- and Montana got the upper hand early, leading Notre Dame on a short scoring drive after an early Michigan fumble to make it 7-0.
Everything, from there, was all Michigan.
Leach threw for three touchdown passes and ran for one more while Montana threw two interceptions for the defending national champion Irish.
Schembechler scored his first win against Notre Dame, but the Fighting Irish eventually got the last laugh -- going 6-4 against the legendary Michigan coach before he retired in 1989.