Decision on UF football game coming Wednesday

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The University of Florida athletic department is monitoring the status of Hurricane Irma, a Category 5 storm that is roaring toward the northeast Caribbean on a path toward the U.S. The Gators have several athletic events on the schedule this weekend, including the home-opening football game against Northern Colorado on Saturday night.

“Plenty unknown at this point, but we will work closely with UF & government officials to monitor storm,” UF athletic director Scott Stricklin wrote on his Twitter account.

Then on Tuesday night, Stricklin tweeted that UF will announce a decision Wednesday about the status of the football game after getting updated on the latest forecast for Irma. There has been talk of the kickoff possibly being moved from 7:30 p.m. to noon on Saturday.

“Met today w/campus & city officials re: hurricane. Hope is to play game in Gainesville this weekend if possible …” Stricklin wrote.

The UF soccer team has home matches scheduled against Florida State at 7 p.m. Friday and 6 p.m. Sunday.

The UF volleyball team has home matches scheduled for 8 p.m. Friday and 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

Last season’s Florida-LSU game in The Swamp was postponed due to the threat of Hurricane Matthew. The decision to postpone was made after discussions between UF and the Southeastern Conference. The Oct. 8 game was rescheduled  for Nov. 19 in Baton Rouge following negotiations between the two schools and the conference.

Because Northern Colorado is not an SEC school, a decision to either postpone Saturday’s game or move up the start time to earlier in the day would be made by UF. UAA officials are keeping Northern Colorado administrators updated on the storm.

“We continue working with university and government officials to monitor the progress of Hurricane Irma and determine the impact of the storm on our events in Gainesville this weekend,” said Steve McClain, Florida’s senior associate athletic director for communications. “Additionally, we are communicating with the Southeastern Conference office and keeping them updated.”

21 COMMENTS

  1. Attendance will be low. Who is gonna leave their family or face the evacuation traffic to be able to attend the game? What about gas? Gas will be hard to come by. And if they make all lanes northbound, we won’t be able to make it back home. Love the gators, but can’t attend in these conditions. Please think of players and their families and the fans and cancel.

  2. How about Thursday night? Why is this a hard decision???? What is wrong with UF lately? It would be a huge turn out! Nobody coming Saturday and I hope the kids are out of town by then.

  3. JDP, not enough time to make arrangements for a Thursday night game. A noon start is the only option. But I think the game will be cancelled and not be made up because North Colorado does not have an open date to match up with Florida’s open date before the Georgia game. Yet another eleven game season, it seems. To bad because Florida needs the playing time to work on the offense and get Franks some extended playing time before Tennessee comes to town. And it would have been good to get a win before the Vols come to town as well.

  4. Really, Why would anyone hold a game during a State and a Federally declared “State of Emergency” in the mists of the largest known hurricane? They don’t issue these State of Emergency Lightly. Who in the heck is going to catch a football in 90 mph winds? Reschedule and stop the interference on preparing for storms. It appears the safety of Students there is not a priority.

  5. Really, Why would anyone hold a game during a State and a Federally declared “State of Emergency” in the mists of the largest known hurricane? They don’t issue these State of Emergency Lightly. Who in the heck is going to catch a football in 90 mph winds? Reschedule and stop the interference on preparing for storms. It appears the safety of Students there is not a priority.

    • I don’t think anyone thinks they are going to have the game during the hurricane first of all. I am not sure how this is interfering with your storm preparation but if it is you have a another set of problems all together. I would also say they have not decided to play the game and probably won’t so why everyone is ranting like they have decided to go on as scheduled is premature. If they cancel the game to early and the hurricane moves off somewhere else you people complain that they shouldn’t have canceled the game so early. If they wait to long then their putting students at risk somehow. These are tough decisions with a lot of money at stake and I would like to see a more proactive approach rather than a reactive one but I don’t know all the details that influence how these decisions are made so I don’t assume I know everything and have all the answers.

      • The problem is that it seems UF is keeping their campus open for the sole purpose of making sure there is a football game. There are students there that could use Friday and even Thursday to get their things together for the storm. They can’t close campus Friday and still have a game without a PR nightmare. This is, in my opinion, why there has not been a decision.

  6. The administration will make the correct decision this week with the benefit of the most accurate information available Wed. This seems like a reasonable balancing of all the interests at play and my strong suspicion is the game won’t be played for the reasons above and more. The University realizes football and other sports take a back seat in this situation.

  7. The University of Florida always puts on hold the safety of their students. Everything I’ve heard is about the football game and nothing about evacuating or worrying about students. Last year with hurricane Matthew the same thing happen. When the priority is money you can expect many things!

  8. Gators would lose the game anyway so why play it? Maybe the offensive line could deliver water bottle without tripping over themselves and the coaches aren’t doing anything such as earning a paycheck. Seems to me they like just getting handed one for doing nothing so they could at least just stay out of the way.

  9. “It’s only one game at the end of the day,” senior slot receiver Brandon Powell said.

    Really ??? What if your job was to save someones life?? Would their families feel like it’s one more day and nothing to us??

    “We went through it last year. We’re not worried about everybody. We’re ready for the next opponent, that’s all there is.”

    You think you are ready for the next opponent? After one day of practice you have it all together? Is this the same coaching staff you had for the first game and all of last year that produced such productive numbers on offense?

  10. Sick and tired of you liberals crying about playing games because some hurricane might hit a day and a half later our offense needs the practice before Tennessee that’s what’s really important , not going 0-2

  11. Have the game on Friday night or cancel the game. It would be irresponsible to have the game on Saturday in the middle of hurricane evacuations and preparation. The game will be poorly attended in any case. It basically becomes an expensive scrimmage.

  12. The hurricane is going to the right. We need to play a scrub school before we play Tenn. Last year they did the same thing and it was beautiful on Sat. I will still drive up, Go Gators!

  13. Play on Friday. Play it at 4 PM if you have to, but there’s no reason this game couldn’t be on Friday. Sure, low attendance, but who cares. Honor tickets for whoever shows up and make it free general admission for anyone who wants to come to bulk up the stands. Hell, maybe evacuators can plan their route to stop for a few hours Friday night in the swamp.

  14. Well if they do end up playing hope we’ve got some really fast receivers, can you imagine passing a ball in 100 mph winds. Just cancel and keep practicing for Tennessee next weekend.

  15. Its funny that people put a game ahead of the students. Play the game Friday night@ 8 pm. That gives most of the fans from 150 or so miles away a chance to at least get there before the end of the 1st quarter. It will be a lot of fun to be doing something different if you are a fan. If you are a player, you wont be doing anything different at all. RUN, RUN, PASS, PUNT! Let the fans see some exciting football from a move fast, score a lot team (Northern Colorado). We will love that.

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