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The Boston College football team, led by head coach Steve Addazio will be kicking off its 2016 campaign on September 3rd, against the Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech at Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny announced earlier this month.
It will be the Eagles’ second trip to Ireland and their first since 1988, when they defeated the Black Knights from Army by a score of 3824.
Apart from the gridiron action, the trip will offer Boston College players—who are unable to study abroad due to their football obligations—a unique opportunity to see a different side of the world and learn about another nation and its people.
“I know the young men on our team will remember this experience for a lifetime, and I’m so excited for them,” Addazio said. “They will get to explore a new country, be immersed in a new culture, and then play the first game on the opening Saturday of the college football season.”
The ties between Boston College and Ireland run deep, and the contest with Georgia Tech represents just another landmark achievement in the ever-growing relationship between the university and host nation.
For its first seventy years of existence, Boston College “remained a small undergraduate institution, offering the sons of the Irish working class a rigorous course load” in various subjects, according to Boston College’s website. And even as enrollment has expanded, the university still attracts a number of students of Irish descent from all over the United States.
Boston College-Ireland relations have made headlines in recent years, particularly concerning the subpoena of various documents and tape recordings locked away on the Chestnut Hill campus. BC’s Burns Library is home to hundreds of vaulted interviews from the Belfast Project, an oral history of The Troubles in Northern Ireland conducted by Boston College researchers in the early and mid-2000s. Since 2010, BC archivists have been engaged in an ongoing legal dispute in an attempt to protect the confidentiality of the interviews against a subpoena by the British government.
Controversy aside, the bout with Georgia Tech will afford SuperFans spread far and wide a chance to cheer on their Eagles in an impactful early-season matchup. Several hundred Boston College students will likely take classes abroad during the 2016-2017 academic year, many of whom will study in Europe. For most of these juniors, it will be their one and only chance to catch a 2016 Eagles football game.
But you don’t have to be living in Europe to make it to the game. Boston College will be offering special packages to those students and fans who want to witness the event in person. No matter, it’s sure to be an exciting time for everyone involved.
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