Hawaii and Cal will open up the 2016 season playing in the far off land of Australia on Sept. 26 at ANZ Stadium in Sydney. This game has been in the works for months and originally was to be a Power 5 vs. Power 5 team and originally wanted to be Baylor but the focus shifted to Cal and Hawaii.
This game will be called the Sydney Cup, so there is a possibility of this being an annual event in the future.
"This is a once-in-a-lifetime type of experience for our student-athletes and an excellent opportunity to see and learn about another culture," Cal head coach Sonny Dykes said in a statement.
Hawaii athletics director David Matlin also had great things to say about this unique matchup.
"The University of Hawai‘i is thrilled for this wonderful opportunity to open the 2016 college football season in Sydney against the University of California, Berkeley," said Matlin. "Our football program has tremendous pride in not only representing the state of Hawai‘i, but all of the Pacific region. From a cultural perspective, this game will afford our student-athletes an experience they will always remember and give most of them the chance to travel outside the United States for the first time in their lives. Traditionally, the University of Hawai‘i has been fortunate to welcome many student-athletes from Australia and we hope this game opens doors for many more."
This is an interesting opportunity for these teams and will be like going to a bowl game, and for Hawaii likely will be their only chance for this tip of trip as they are rebuilding with new head coach Nick Rolovich.
There is little info about a television deal, but likely ESPN, and payment for getting these teams to agree to play a game overseas and in a different hemisphere. Very early reports say that some branch of the Australian government would be paying for the travel costs, and that would make it worth it even if a pay out is either non-existent or low.
There have been two other college football games in Australia with Wyoming taking UTEP in 1985 and BYU versus Colorado State in 1987, both of those games were played in Melbourne.
Here is Hawaii's 2016 non-conference schedule, and remember the Warriors can play 13 total games in a given year.
Aug. 26 vs. Cal in Australia
Sept. 3 at Michigan
Sept. 10 vs. UT Martin
Sept. 17 at Arizona
Nov. 26 vs. UMass