Sept. 18, 2005
For the first time, ESPN will televise a Labor Day matchup between college football powerhouses Florida State and Miami when the two ACC rivals meet at the Orange Bowl in primetime (time TBD) on Monday, Sept. 4, 2006, it was announced by John Wildhack, ESPN senior vice president, programming and ACC Commissioner John D. Swofford. The college football showdown will take place the Monday prior to ESPN’s historic, first NFL Monday Night Football regular-season telecast.
The 2006 Florida State-Miami telecast will mark the third consecutive year the teams have scheduled to play on Labor Day; the previous two telecasts were featured on ABC Sports (note: the 2004 matchup was moved off Labor Day due to Hurricane Frances).
The unopposed Labor Day primetime window offers these elite ACC programs the much-deserved national spotlight, Wildhack said. This blockbuster matchup is appointment viewing for sports fans, and therefore an ideal companion to the most successful series in sports television history, Monday Night Football.
Swofford added, The ACC is pleased to announce that Florida State and Miami will meet again on Labor Day Monday in 2006. The Seminoles and Hurricanes rivalry is one of the greatest in college football and having these teams showcase their talents in front of a national audience to kickoff the season is tremendous.
“When all factors were weighed, it was collectively decided that playing next year’s game versus Miami on Labor Day night was in the best interest of all parties concerned, said Dave Hart, Florida State director of athletics. Miami never had the opportunity to host the game on that day and the viewership and exposure for the ACC and both universities from our game 10 days ago was exceptional. Next year’s game will serve as a marquee match-up for ESPN as a lead into their first year with the NFL Monday night package. The dynamics now associated with playing this game on that date certainly give pause to any long-term commitments: however, we will be receptive to revisiting it as circumstances warrant that consideration.”