Notre Dame Prep football team to play 2020 game in Ireland

The 2012 Notre Dame Prep football team in Ireland. The Saints will return to play a game in Ireland in 2020. (Photo courtesy of Global Football)

Notre Dame Preparatory has great memories of Ireland and next summer will return to the Emerald Isle to play a regular season football game as part of the 2020 Dublin High School Football Showcase.

The Saints’ football team and cheerleaders will head to Ireland from Aug. 25-31 to immerse themselves in Irish culture through a series of educational tours and will showcase their brand of football, just as they did in 2012, according to a press release.

On their previous visit, the Saints defeated Father Judge of Philadelphia 20-6 in County Meath, an hour north of Dublin, while honoring former head coach Scot Bemis, who died the prior January. Saints running back and linebacker Luke Taffuri ran for two touchdowns and made five tackles in the win.

This time around Notre Dame Prep will practice at the athletic facilities of University College Dublin and will play in the nation’s capital at a venue that is to be announced, as is the opponent for varsity head coach George Prelock’s team.

“We are extremely excited to have this opportunity to represent our school and sport overseas,” Coach Prelock said in a prepared statement.

“This is truly an amazing experience for the entire NDP community. We feel honored to be invited to participate in this event again and to provide our student-athletes with an extraordinary educational experience that will create lifelong memories.”

Notre Dame Prep principal Jill Platt echoed Coach Prelock’s sentiment.

The Notre Dame Prep football team will play a game in Dublin, Ireland. The team previously did this in 2012. (Photo courtesy of Global Football)

“This opportunity illuminates our philosophy of developing the mind, body, and soul of each student at NDP. Involving them in the occasion to represent NDP in such an athletic event that takes them across the world to experience different cultures, share their faith and demonstrate their school pride is irreplaceable. We are truly honored and excited to be invited,” she said in a prepared statement.

Notre Dame Prep will again help bring Dublin to a standstill when all teams, marching bands and cheerleaders join a city center parade on the Thursday night before the games, which will culminate in an American-style pep rally in the heart of Dublin City.

“We are delighted that Notre Dame Prep has chosen to return to Ireland seven years after that initial visit broadened the horizons of their student-athletes and all who traveled with the team,” Global Football President and Founder Patrick Steenberge said in a prepared statement.

The full list of high schools committing to the event will be announced during the coming months, with Fenwick High School from Chicago having confirmed their participation, a release states.

All traveling players, coaches and supporters will attend the Aer Lingus College Football Classic between Navy and The University of Notre Dame at the Aviva Stadium Saturday, Aug. 29, 2020, which is a partner event.

“Notre Dame Prep will be part of game-week 2020, which will attract more than 35,000 U.S. visitors to Ireland along with worldwide sports media, including ESPN which will broadcast the ND-Navy game live,” Mr. Steenberge said.

“I know the entire NDP community is looking forward to joining the team in Ireland.”

Four-time Super Bowl winner and decorated U.S. Military veteran Rocky Bleier will serve as honorary chairman for the high school event.

The former University of Notre Dame running back will attend the series of games to perform a ceremonial coin toss and will welcome all participants at the Aug. 27, 2020 Pep Rally.

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