Hurricane Ian, a Category 4 hurricane, made landfall in Florida earlier this week. The storm’s devastating impacts will be felt for months to come, and the storm, while weakened since initially hitting Florida, hasn’t completely fizzled out.
Rain and wind will impact college football this Saturday, and I’ve compiled a list of Group of Five games already impacted or likely to be impacted by the weather system. College football betting odds will also be affected, as the market takes into account stadium changes and possible rain and wind.
Of course, college football schedules feel incredibly unimportant compared to the major impacts caused by the storm across the southern United States. It’s worth noting, that while not in the Group of Five, Florida State is giving free tickets to Saturday’s ranked matchup with Wake Forest to Floridians displaced by Hurricane Ian. It’s heartwarming to see college athletic departments in Florida working to help those in need, and I’m sure others will follow Florida State’s lead in future weeks.
American Athletic Conference
In the AAC, East Carolina at South Florida had to move locations. Instead of playing in Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, the teams will meet in Boca Raton, at Florida Atlantic’s home stadium. Kudos to FAU, which is on the road this week at North Texas, for helping out South Florida.
“With Hurricane Ian building into a powerful and potentially very impactful storm on the Bay area, the people and resources in our community, we felt it was in everyone’s best interest to move our game out of the Tampa Bay area,” South Florida Vice President of Athletics Michael Kelly said in a statement. “We are very grateful to our friends and colleagues at FAU for their tremendous assistance and cooperation in using their facility to play Saturday’s game and to ECU and the Conference for working with us during this time.”
Elsewhere in the AAC, SMU will now play at UCF on Wednesday in an important conference clash. The game was first pushed from this Saturday to Sunday before being moved again to a few days later. Both teams had a Week 6 bye.
There aren’t any official game changes in the Sun Belt, but expect several games in this conference to be impacted by weekend weather.
JMU’s home game against Texas State in Harrisonburg, Virginia, will likely feature rain this weekend, and the point total for the game is 51.5 points. Appalachian State’s home game against the Citadel in Boone, North Carolina, could have rain showers, although the system could be through town by kickoff at 3:30 p.m. Marshall can’t avoid the wet weather either, as Saturday’s forecast in Huntington, West Virginia, looks rain-filled for when the Thundering Herd host Gardner-Webb.
Norfolk, Virginia, will see plenty of rain Friday, but the forecast clears up a bit Saturday for Old Dominion’s home game with Liberty. The same is likely true in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, which should see significant Friday rain, but the Saturday forecast looks good for Coastal Carolina’s home game with Georgia Southern.
C-USA, MAC, MWC
Rain in Charlotte should clear out by Saturday evening, leaving decent weather for when the 49ers host UTEP. Friday’s weather forecast isn’t ideal, but Conference USA seems poised to mostly avoid Hurricane Ian impacts.
Games of MAC and Mountain West teams also shouldn’t be impacted this weekend, as the majority of teams in each league are playing conference games in the midwest and western parts of the U.S.