Irish linebacker Jack Kiser knows Notre Dame-Purdue rivalry well

Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 11:14 PM EDT
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NOTRE DAME, Ind. (WNDU) - For decades, you could set the September calendar in northern Indiana around the annual Notre Dame-Purdue game.

But the rivalry hasn’t been played for the last seven years since the Irish beat the Boilermakers 30-14 in a Shamrock Series game at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. That long layoff finally ends this Saturday in South Bend.

Notre Dame-Purdue is a game that divides neighborhoods, offices and families all around our area. Split loyalties are a familiar feeling for a lot of you, and even some of the Irish players.

Linebacker Jack Kiser sure knows that feeling. The former Pioneer High School football star grew up just about halfway between Notre Dame and Ross-Ade stadiums. He’s seen blue and gold, and old gold and black mixed his entire life.

His family definitely leans toward the Boilermakers. His dad, brother, cousins, aunts, uncles, best friends and girlfriend all love Purdue. So, who will they be cheering for Saturday?

“They’re definitely rooting for Jack Kiser, right?” Kiser joked. “And I think they’re definitely rooting for Notre Dame. I mean, but at the same time, it’s hard to say that everybody’s going to be rooting for Notre Dame. But there’s definitely going to be some Jack Kiser fans out there.

“I’ve already warned everybody that if they wore Purdue gea,r they wouldn’t be let in,” Kiser continued. “I put my dad in charge of that. So, that could be not the smartest decision being that he’s a Boilermaker as well.”

Kiser says Saturday’s game will be special for him, even surreal. Not only are his family members Boiler backers, but he also knows a lot of the players on the Purdue team.

And WNDU is your home for Notre Dame football on game day this Saturday. It all starts at 1:30 p.m. with Terry, Chuck and Megan live from Notre Dame Stadium on “Countdown to Kickoff.”

Then a little after 2:30 p.m., the Boilermakers and the Irish kick off their first matchup in seven years. And you’ll see the game live here on WNDU.

And don’t forget to stick around after the game for highlights and reaction from the stadium on 16 News Now.

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