Report: Miami focused on playing LSU in AT&T Stadium in 2018

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Looking to set up a high-profile game on a neutral field, it appears there is a possibility Miami and LSU could be setting up a neutral site game at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. According to Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald, there are talks about making the game a reality in 2018.

“Though nothing is finalized, UM’s talks with [AT&T] Stadium have progressed and all parties are working toward having the Hurricanes open the 2018 season against LSU in Arlington,” Jackson wrote in a recent column. According to Jackson, the game would likely be played on a Saturday night in primetime before a national TV audience, which is generally the arrangement for college football games played in AT&T Stadium, formerly called Cowboys Stadium, since opening in 2009.

It was previously reported Miami was in discussions to play a game in Atlanta against Alabama, likely as part of the Chick-fil-A Kickoff in 2017, but Jackson suggests Miami is now focusing its efforts on making a 2018 game against LSU in Arlington part of the schedule, while backing out of discussions about playing Alabama in Atlanta.

LSU has played in AT&T Stadium three times since the stadium opened. The Tigers have participated in two Cowboys Classic games, defeating Oregon in 2011 and TCU last fall. LSU has also played in a Cotton Bowl game inside the stadium, defeating Texas A&M (then a member of the Big 12), in the 2011 game. LSU will open the 2014 season against Wisconsin in Houston for a little change of pace.

Miami has never played in AT&T Stadium. The Hurricanes already have non-conference road games scheduled in 2018 against Toledo and Rutgers, although if the chance to play in AT&T Stadium becomes a possibility it would not be a surprise to see Miami wiggle (or buy) out the road game at Toledo.

LSU owns the all-time series lead against Miami, 9-3. The Tigers dominated Miami in the most recent meeting with a 40-3 shelling in the Peach Bowl in 2005. The two schools have not played in the regular season since 1988, with Miami winning the most recent regular season match-up, 44-3. That was the first meeting since 1968.

Meanwhile, Alabama head coach Nick Saban will continue to have concerns about schools backing out of playing his Crimson Tide if Miami is focusing on playing LSU instead.