Penn State Nittany Lions coach Bill O’Brien said on his radio show Thursday night that he would be interested in playing a game internationally and possibly in a warm weather climate. O’Brien went on to say that he and his bosses at Penn State are looking into the idea in hopes of getting a game scheduled in the near future.
Just last week, the New England Patriots played the St. Louis Rams in the NFL’s annual game in London England. The NFL has been scheduling games internationally for years in an effort to grow the league into new markets. O’Brien is a former coach of the Patriots and would seemingly like to see the NCAA follow suit. Without any bowl games for the foreseeable future, it could be a smart move to for the Nittany Lions to try something like this to increase exposure and popularity. He is hoping to get something finalized by the 2014 or 2015 season.
While the idea sounds good and seems like a no-brainer on paper, there are certainly some logistical hurdles to overcome. The obvious issue would be something similar to what the NFL experiences in regards to scheduling and time change. The NFL gives teams playing in London a bye the next week to recover from any jet lag and to get back to a regular practice routine. One would think the NCAA would have to do the same thing, which isn’t always easy when conference play is involved.
You also have to keep in mind the cost associated with a game like this. NFL teams would obviously have no trouble fronting the bill, but certain cash-strapped college programs might. It may not be a problem for Penn State, but a smaller school may have an issue as a lot of times even domestic post-season bowl trips can hurt a team financially.
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