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Fighting Irish in Dublin. 1996  August 10, 2012 – 00:00

Fighting Irish in Dublin. 1996

Lansdowne Road

But rare does not mean it is unpublished, it will not be the first time that Notre Dame to honor their ancestral roots playing in Dublin, as did the November 2, 1996. It was another time and much lower expectation, the fooball was less well known in the Old World and the college, much less. There was no internet, no globalization, but the event drew 38, 651 spectators, some 12, 000 of them arrived from across the Atlantic.

This is the story of that historic confrontation.


World War II, Germany.

A University of Rhode Island will have the honor of being the 1st varsity play a game of football in Europe. I made ​​Thanksgiving Day (November 22), 1973 in Frankfurt, Germany, against a combined U.S. Coast Guard. . The historic match, dubbed "The Turkey Bowl", which the Rams won 36-6, and was broadcast by the Voice of America radio stations of the Armed Forces [1].

It was a way to encourage Thanksgiving U.S. soldiers stationed in military bases in Europe. Rhode Island was a college who was active in Division I-AA, framed in the Yankee Conference (now at Colonial. The party was "official" and closed a season in which the Rams finished with a record of 6-2-2.

Fifteen years would go by however, until he returned to dispute a game of college football in Europe. This time it was two college teams flew to London. The game was played on October 16, 1988, and the result was 20 for the Spiders of Richmond (Virginia) by 17 for Boston Terriers. Both teams were also members of the Colonial Conference Division I-AA. . The Spiders are kept in it, while the Massachusetts team disappeared in 1997 [2].



The NCAA sought to involve front-row equipment, roots implanted in communities or at least Irish Catholic. The teams selected for the opening match, on November 19, 1988, were Boston College, the team from the "other" Catholic University of the IA, and Army.

West Point Cadets came with a record 8-1. The Eagles with a poor 2-7. But New England led by their QB Mark Kamphaus were made ​​with a stunning victory with a comfortable 38-24. In the Lansdowne Road Stadium gathered 42, 525 spectators, 10, 000 of them arrived from across the Atlantic, led by Senator Edward M. Kennedy, head of a clan and a descendant of Irish Catholic. No lack of cheerleaders, mascots or hot dogs, but talking about pets, cadets could not bring his beloved mule to Ireland, for reasons of health regulation, and had to "rent" Local mule. . Local fans are turned with Catholics from Boston College, remember that Massachusetts is also a state of strong Irish roots, and eagles flew to spring a surprise against cadets from the very first quarter, in which a race 53 yards from tailback Mike Sanders gave the Eagles an advantage that its rivals could not counter in the rest of the game [3].

Boston College's victory helped him make up a season with more pain than glory. For the Black Knights, the 2nd defeat of the season is not deprived of playing in the Sun Bowl, where they were defeated by Alabama by 28 to 29.

The following year, on 2 December, held the 2nd edition of "Classic" in the same stadium. A few days earlier, on October 28, the Rhode Island Rams returned to Europe, this time to Milan, where they were defeated by the Villanova Wildcats 25-28.


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