Georgia Tech, Boston College to Open 2016 Season in Ireland

Aer Lingus College Football Classic between the Eagles and Yellow Jackets set for Aviva Stadium on Sept. 3, 2016

Boston College to Host Georgia Tech in Ireland in 2016

Chestnut Hill, Mass. – Boston College will host Georgia Tech in Dublin’s Aviva Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 3 in the Aer Lingus College Football Classic to open the 2016 season. The game will be televised on ESPN2. It will be the third time in six years an American college football game will take place in Ireland and the second BC will play on the Emerald Isle.

The announcement was made in Dublin at a press conference attended by Prime Minister Enda Kenny. Boston College, the home team in the matchup, will hold a press conference at 11 a.m. in the Yawkey Athletics Center featuring William V. Campbell Director of Athletics Brad Bates, head football coach Steve Addazio and the Mayor of Boston, Martin J. Walsh. It will be streamed live on  

Aer Lingus was also announced as title sponsors for the game that will see the Eagles kick off the 2016-17 season against the Ramblin’ Wreck. Tourism Ireland, Failte Ireland and Dublin City Council are also supporting the game. 

Fans can purchase travel packages, which include tickets to the Eagles’ season, opener by visiting

Boston College will be making its second visit to Ireland. In 1988, the Eagles defeated Army, 38-24, in front of 45,000 fans in the old Lansdowne Road Stadium in the Emerald Isle Classic. It was the first American football game played in Europe. In 2013, members of the 1988 team, including head coach Jack Bicknell reunited for the silver anniversary of the game and were honored on the field at Alumni Stadium during the BC-Army game.

The 2016 opener will be the first meeting between the Eagles and Yellow Jackets  since Oct. 20, 2012, when Georgia Tech beat BC, 37-17, Atlanta. The Ramblin’ Wreck hold a 6-2 series advantage as the Eagles earned wins in 1998 and 2007. The contest in Ireland will be the first in the series on neutral territory.

The tilt in Dublin is being organized by Irish American Events Ltd., a joint venture between and Anthony Travel, who have been involved in the recent college football games in Ireland. 

The 2016 Aer Lingus Football Classic is also part of the ACC Worldwide initiative that seeks to further the conference’s member institutions internationally through promotion, marketing and athletic competition.

BC Head Football Coach Steve Addazio
“I know the young men on our team will remember this experience for a lifetime, and I'm so excited for them. 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. It's great that we will get to share this experience with our conference friends from Georgia Tech. In BC and Georgia Tech, you have two outstanding academic institutions with great football traditions, and we are grateful for the opportunity to showcase our programs in Ireland.”

BC Athletics Director Brad Bates
"The great people of Ireland have played a key role in the history of the city of Boston and Boston College. This event will offer a once-in-a-generation experience for our student-athletes, students, faculty, staff and university community and citizens of Boston. We are grateful to the Irish government and tourism officials, Aer Lingus and Anthony Travel representatives who have worked tirelessly to make this game possible."

Georgia Tech, Boston College to Open 2016 Season in Ireland

THE FLATS – Georgia Tech and Boston College will open the 2016 football season in Dublin, Ireland, for the Aer Lingus College Football Classic. The game, which will be the official ACC opener for both schools, will be held Sept. 3, 2016, at Aviva Stadium, and is scheduled to be televised on ESPN2.

The official announcement was made Thursday in Dublin by Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny, Lord Mayor of Dublin Christy Burke, and officials from Aer Lingus, Tourism Ireland and Boston College.

“It’s great to open the 2016 season in Ireland. This is a historic day for Georgia Tech Football as we will play our first-ever international football game,” Georgia Tech Athletic Director Mike Bobinski said. “This is an amazing opportunity to bring college football back to Ireland and to give our student-athletes, coaches, staff, and fans a truly global experience. 

The 2016 game will mark the ninth college football game held in Ireland and the seventh featuring FBS schools. It will be the second college game played at Aviva Stadium.

It will mark the first international game for the historic Yellow Jackets football program. It will be head coach Paul Johnson’s second football game in Ireland; he was Navy’s offensive coordinator when the Midshipmen played Notre Dame in 1996. 

“I’m excited for our guys to have the opportunity to experience playing in Ireland,” head coach Paul Johnson said. “Our players really enjoyed it at Navy when we played in Dublin in 1996. It’ll be something they remember for the rest of their lives.” 

“We are thrilled that Georgia Tech, a truly world class institute, will be bringing its Yellow Jackets football team to Dublin to open the 2016 season,” said Paul Gleeson, Consul General of Ireland in Atlanta. “We can promise the Georgia Tech fan base an outstanding experience in Ireland with our unique blend of beautiful scenery, rich culture, and famous hospitality.”

For more information on the Aer Lingus College Football Classic, fans can follow on social media – Twitter (@CFBireland), Facebook (, and Instagram (@CFBireland). The official hashtag for the game is #GameonIRE. 

The 2016 Aer Lingus College Football Classic is also part of the ACC Worldwide initiative that seeks to further the conference’s member institutions internationally through promotion, marketing, and athletics competition.

When Georgia Tech and Boston College play in Ireland, it will be the first series meeting since Oct. 20, 2012, a 37-17 Yellow Jackets win on The Flats. Georgia Tech leads the brief series 6-2, including a 3-0 mark away from Bobby Dodd Stadium. The game will be the first in the series not played on either team’s home field.

Football Bowl Division Games in Ireland


Lansdowne Road Stadium


Boston College 38

Army 24


Lansdowne Road Stadium


Pittsburgh 46

Rutgers 29


Croke Park


Notre Dame 54

Navy 27


Aviva Stadium


Notre Dame 50

Navy 10


Croke Park


Penn State 26

UCF 24


The Atlantic Coast Conference, which for over six decades has established itself as one of the strongest and most competitive intercollegiate conferences in the nation, is comprised of 15 universities that stand among the world’s most renowned in higher education. Boston College, Clemson, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Louisville, Miami, North Carolina, NC State, Notre Dame, Pitt, Syracuse, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest each have global reach with their brands, student populations and academic missions. ACC Worldwide seeks to further the conference’s member institutions internationally through promotion, marketing and athletic competition. For more information, visit