Emerald Isle Classic

Emerald Isle Classic

name = Emerald Isle Classic/Shamrock Classic
defunct =
logo =
image_size =
caption =
stadium = Croke Park
previous_stadiums = Lansdowne Road
location = Dublin, Ireland
years = 1988, 1989, 1996,
prev_matchup_year =
prev_matchup_teams =
prev_matchup_score =

The Emerald Isle Classic was the first NCAA-sanctioned American college football game played on the European continent. The game was played on the pitch at Lansdowne Road in Dublin, Ireland in the years 1988 and 1989. The first game featured a 2-7 Boston College team lead by Mark Kamphaus against the 8-1 Cadets of West Point.

The game was intended to be an annual event to attract some of the 40 million Americans of Irish descent back to their motherland. College teams with particularly Irish or Catholic background were chosen in an effort to attract Irish nationals to the games as well. After poor attendance in 1989, the Emerald Isle Classic was discontinued.

In 1996, Notre Dame and the United States Naval Academy began a second American football event in Ireland called the Shamrock Classic. The event drew a slightly smaller crowd than the first Emerald Isle Classic. The game was played on the pitch of Croke Park. Notre Dame won the game over Navy, setting the record for the longest winning streak over an annual collegiate opponent at 33 wins—a streak that would reach 43 years before a dramatic Navy win in 2007. A 2012 return trip is planned for Notre Dame and Navy.



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