Excitement is beginning to build for Kansas State’s 2025 football game in Ireland

An idea popped into John Anthony’s head shortly after he looked around Kansas State’s football complex on Friday and noticed that the Wildcats celebrate their bowl history by displaying the logos from every postseason game they have ever played in on a pair of wall murals.

Why not put the Aer Lingus College Football Classic in Dublin, Ireland up there next?

As co-founder of the international game, he is confident that EMAW nation will remember the journey there to watch K-State play Iowa State in August of 2025 more fondly than even some of their favorite bowl trips.

“That weekend in Dublin will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen,” Anthony said during a news conference in Manhattan. “It will be (better) than anything you’ve seen at an Alamo Bowl and some other great places. By the way, we want our logo up on one of these walls. This is even more cool than a bowl game. The purple in Dublin when you take over that city is going to be one of the more cool things that you’ve ever been a part of.”

The game is still more than a year away, but K-State and Ireland officials teamed up to promote the beginning of ticket packages this week.

The folks at the Aer Lingus College Football Classic also explained why they targeted K-State and Iowa State for the game.

“The idea of having a rivalry game with Iowa State is huge for us,” Anthony said. “This is the best rivalry game we have had there yet. To be able to have a Big 12 conference game to kick off the season, quite frankly with two teams that could face each other again the conference championship game, is really significant.”

Anthony said he is also to eager to see which team brings more fans to Ireland. In the past, that hasn’t been much of question with teams like Notre Dame and Nebraska playing in Ireland.

Some weren’t thrilled when a new location was announced for the Farmaggedon rivalry, because the Wildcats had to give up a home date with the Cyclones to make it happen. But the reservations that some fans had about this game are beginning to be replaced by excitement.

K-State athletic director Gene Taylor and football coach Chris Klieman have both said this was too good of an opportunity to pass up on. For some, it could be the trip of a lifetime.

That will certainly be the case for Klieman, who says he has never traveled outside the country. Other than a trip to Hawaii, he’s never left the contiguous 48 states.

“When we surprised our players with it, you could see the energy and the excitement of our guys,” Klieman said. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for these kids to experience something that they may never experience again. It’s also an opportunity for my wife and I to go experience something that we haven’t experienced before.”

Another perk of the game: TV exposure.

K-State and Iowa State will play in Week 0 before most teams take the field seven days later. There won’t be much competition for ratings. The Wildcats and Cyclones should be the focus of college football during their game window. Anthony said his game is routinely watched by more than 4 million people.

“Everybody in the world is watching this game,” Klieman said.

Some logistics still need to be figured out. Klieman said he hasn’t spent much time figuring out how to adjust K-State’s preseason schedule as the Wildcats start the 2025 season by playing four difficult games (Iowa State, North Dakota, Army at Arizona) in four weeks.

The Wildcats are also hoping to work with the Big 12 to get a favorable bye week after those first four games. Klieman said K-State won’t look to push back the North Dakota game, saying that jet leg won’t be an issue that early in the season.

Many of those issues will be tabled for a later day. K-State’s main focus is on the 2024 season right now, after all. But it’s never too early to start thinking about the game. Clearly, it will be unlike any other Farmaggedon.