Football fans around the world are eagerly anticipating the upcoming international tour of the Kansas State football team to Israel and Abu Dhabi. Head coach Jerome Tang and selected players recently held a press conference to discuss their preparations for this historic 10-day trip, which is set to take place from August 9 to August 20.
The traveling party will embark on a journey that will see them spend three nights each in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, two of Israel’s most iconic cities. They will then head to Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), where they will spend four nights. The tour is unique in that Kansas State, along with the University of Arizona, will be the first college teams to ever take a foreign tour to Abu Dhabi.
The exhibition tour is being generously sponsored by Athletes for Israel and its Founder and Chairman, Daniel Posner, as well as the Abu Dhabi Tourism Board. Athletes for Israel is an organization dedicated to combating antisemitism and racism. They bring athletes to Israel to experience the Holy Land and develop a deeper connection with its history, culture, innovation, and people.
During the press conference, Coach Jerome Tang expressed his excitement about the trip, calling it a bucket-list experience for him personally. He shared that the team was originally planning to go to Greece, but the opportunity to visit Israel and Abu Dhabi was something they couldn’t turn down.
When asked about his expectations for the tour, Coach Tang highlighted the importance of the team’s time together and the need for players to step up and take leadership roles. He emphasized the value of every player feeling like they have a significant role on the team, especially with the transfer portal’s current landscape, where players can easily switch teams.
The team’s strategy for the games during the tour is to give every player an opportunity to shine. Coach Tang wants each player to come back from the tour feeling like they have a major role on the team, which will hopefully encourage them to stay committed to Kansas State.
Apart from the football games, the tour will also offer the players a chance to experience the rich cultural and religious history of Israel. They will get to learn about Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, as the birthplace of these three religions is in close proximity to each other in Jerusalem.
Tang praised the growth of the Big 12 conference and expressed his excitement about being a part of an expanded conference. He believes that having more schools join the conference will enhance its competitiveness and further establish it as one of the top three conferences in the country.
The press conference also shed light on the team’s preparations for the trip. Complete Sports Management and Lea Miller-Tooley’s group have taken care of all the arrangements for the team. They have scheduled various cultural and educational activities, including discussions about the significance of each religion in Jerusalem.
The trip is not only about football but also about representing Kansas State and the United States with respect and dignity. Coach Tang emphasized the importance of the team’s behavior and conduct, both on and off the field, to shine a positive light on their university.
Overall, the international tour to Israel and Abu Dhabi is a unique opportunity for the Kansas State football team. It’s a chance to experience different cultures, build unity through sports, and showcase their talents on an international stage. The players are eagerly looking forward to the trip, and with the guidance of Coach Tang, they aim to make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.