Cal Preparing For Hawaii Season Opener in Australia
LOS ANGELES (AP) — California coach Sonny Dykes has prepared for the travel challenges associated with a season-opening game in Sydney.
Dykes has spoken with NFL coaches who have taken their teams to London, prepared onboard exercises for players and consulted Nike for compression apparel they can wear during the flight when the Golden Bears depart the Bay Area on Aug. 20 and arrive down under on August 22nd.
But for a real understanding of how taxing travel to and from Australia can be, Dykes could have just asked Oregon State punter Nick Porebski.
"When I first did it, I was jet-lagged for about two days," the Melbourne-born Porebski said at Pac-12 media days. "It is a tough flight. You're sitting there for a long time. Your legs are going to get heavy."
Porebski is one of a growing number of Australians to find success playing what his countrymen call American football, fueling growth in the sport back home.
A Cal spokesman said approximately 70,000 tickets have been sold for the August 27th game against Hawaii at the 83,500-capacity ANZ Stadium, the first college football game to be played in Australia since BYU defeated Colorado State in 1987.