Nittany Nation in Ireland: Finishing the Field

Nittany Nation in Ireland: Finishing the Field

Student-athletes are finishing preparations for Saturday's game, and groundskeepers are preparing the field for American football.
DUBLIN, IRELAND - While the Penn State and UCF football teams are crossing T's and dotting I's on their game plans for the Croke Park Classic, crews are putting the finishing touches on the field.

Croke Park has some quirks to hosting a college football game. Both Penn State and UCF must use multiple locker rooms due to the size of their rosters compared to that of a Gaelic football team.

“We really enjoy having American visitors here, and to give them the chance to see what a great stadium this is and a great sporting arena,” said Paraic Duffy, Director General of the Gaelic Athletic Association. “It's very much a part of what we are in Ireland. And people have a great sense of pride in Croke Park.”

Another difference is making the field smaller for American football. Croke Park groundskeepers have employed GPS and lasers to mark the smaller dimensions.

“It almost looked like it wasn't the right size...I almost did the Hoosiers deal to take the measuring tape out and measure it,” said Penn State Head Coach James Franklin. “Make sure it's a 10-foot basket and everything's right.”

Kick off is set for 1:30 p.m. Dublin time, 8:30 a.m. for people in Pennsylvania. The game is set to air on ESPN2.
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