A volcanic eruption 900 miles away from the meeting between Penn State and UCF may be enough to delay the season opener of college football.
A report from the associated press indicates that an increase in volcanic activity in Iceland may put the contest between Penn State and UCF into jeopardy, whilst inhabitants near the stratovolcano Bardarbunga have been evacuated as a safety precaution.
The game between the two college football teams is scheduled to be played in Dublin, Ireland on the 30th of August and despite the country of Iceland being roughly 875 miles away from the venue, the aftermath of volcanic eruption could halt the contest.
Due to airborne particles and ash entering the atmosphere because of the possible eruption, air travel would be untenable for a significant period of time meaning neither side would be able to travel to Dublin for the match-up.
The scheduled game at Croke Park would be the first time that either Penn State or UCF have ever played a college football game abroad but the possibility of the game has been put in serious doubt because of mother nature.
Football often billed as the sport for any kind of weather, even when torrential rain or snowfall strikes the game usually goes ahead, but a volcanic eruption is a different matter entirely.
The logistics of the travel have already caused problems in the build up, particularly to the Penn State Nittany Lions, Michael Hazel who is the director of football operations explained: "It’s an ongoing, fluid process, It’s a challenge. There’s just a lot of moving parts that exist when you are going overseas.”
The unpredictable factor surrounding the possible volcanic eruption is an aspect that neither team could prepare for, with the problems it creates for flying to and from Dublin.
Hazel stated about the issue: "We're aware of that, and we're monitoring that situation," Hazel told reporters. "That's kind of out of our area of expertise."
Unfortunately there is nothing either team can do other than hope and pray that this kind of event doesn't occur and the season opener can kick off like planned.