Notre Dame Stadium
Notre Dame Stadium is the home football stadium for the University of Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team. The stadium is located on the campus of the University of Notre Dame at Notre Dame, Indiana, United States, just north of the city of South Bend.

The stadium opened its gates in 1930, replacing the old stadium Cartier Field. Total cost of construction was more than $750,000. The original seating capacity was 54,000. Knute Rockne played a key role in its design, keeping the space between the playing field and the stands to a minimum. The stadium is patterned, on a smaller scale, after Michigan Stadium, the main difference being the tunnel location. The Irish played their first game in the new stadium on October 4, 1930, beating Southern Methodist University 20”“14. The official dedication was on October 11 against Navy. Over the years, its capacity was gradually increased to 59,075. In 1997, 21,000 new seats were added to the stadium, bringing the seating capacity to the present 80,795. The playing surface has always been natural grass.

Prior to the 1997 expansion, Notre Dame Stadium lacked permanent field lights. On September 18, 1982, portable lighting by Musco Lighting was used for the first night game in the stadium's history. Permanent lights were installed as part of the expansion. The lights were paid for by NBC, which has held the exclusive television rights to all home games since 1991. The permanent lights were added primarily to ensure sufficient lighting for mid-afternoon games in November; the university's agreement with NBC stipulates that there be no home night games.

"Touchdown Jesus"
The stadium is known for its view of "Touchdown Jesus", a nickname given to the large mural entitled The Word of Life by Millard Sheets of the resurrected Jesus. Installed in 1964 on the Hesburgh Library, the mosaicked wall looms over the stadium mirroring the raised arms of a referee signifying a touchdown. Installed during the spring of 1964, the stadium expansion had the side effect of partially obscuring the view of the mural from the field. The Word of Life Mural was a gift of Mr. and Mrs. Howard V. Phalin of Winnetka, Illinois.

Prior to 1966, attendance figures were based on the total in the house. The largest crowd to attend a home game prior to expansion was 61,296 on October 6, 1962, against Purdue. Since 1966, attendance figures have been based on paid admissions with a fixed number of tickets available, accounting for the familiar 59,075 figure through the 1996 season. Until Ara Parseghian arrived as coach at Notre Dame in 1964, sellouts were not the norm. Since then, tickets to a Notre Dame football game have been notoriously hard to come by. As of the conclusion of the 2009 season, there have been 212 consecutive sellouts at Notre Dame Stadium, and 250 sellouts in the past 251 games dating back to 1966. The lone exception was a 1973 game against Air Force which had been moved midseason by ABC to Thanksgiving Day and was played with the students absent. The announced attendance was 57,235. Attendance at all five home games in 1965 exceeded 59,000 as well. The official capacity was listed at 80,225 when the stadium was first expanded. A subsequent computer revision put it at 80,012. Sideline bleachers, which had been removed during expansion, were put back in after a few years, bringing the figure to its present 80,795.


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