College Football Games Now Affected by Weather in April, Not Just in the Fall

Brian Donegan
Published: April 13, 2018

Fall college football games often feature some strange weather, but the spring games are typically more tranquil. That's not the case this year, as at least eight games have been either canceled or rescheduled so far due to hazardous conditions, according to SB Nation.

Home games at the University of WisconsinUniversity of Michigan, Northwestern University and Iowa State University originally scheduled for this weekend have all been canceled.

Thunderstorms are expected to rumble through much of the Midwest this weekend, and these schools do not want to risk playing football with the possibility of lightning striking near their stadiums.

(MORE: Severe Thunderstorms, Heavy Rain to Erupt Over the Midwest)

The Michigan offensive players huddle during game action between the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Michigan Wolverines on Nov. 25, 2017, at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
(Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Other games have been rescheduled to avoid any possible weather hazards.

The University of Minnesota has moved its game a couple of days earlier, with kickoff scheduled for Thursday due to the expected near-blizzard conditions from Winter Storm Xanto this weekend.

(MORE: Winter Storm Xanto Forecast)

The University of Louisville will play a day earlier than scheduled to avoid potential severe thunderstorms Saturday. The Red-White Spring Game will kick off Friday evening.

Ohio State University announced it will move up the start time of its spring game to 11:45 a.m. EDT Saturday. Bowling Green State University will play Saturday as planned, but the game has been moved to an indoor stadium to avoid thunderstorms.

Last weekend, West Virginia University canceled its Gold-Blue Spring Game as snow piled up in the Mountain State.

But it wasn't just northern teams impacted by inclement weather last weekend. Wind chills were in the upper 20s as fans of the Razorbacks watched their home team play at the University of Arkansas.

(MORE: Waves of Cold Air Brought Record Lows)

It was so cold in the Deep South that the stands were practically empty at Ole Miss last Saturday. The actual temperature was in the mid-30s, but it felt even colder with 10- to 20-mph winds and light rain falling.

In addition to the dangers of lightning or heavy snow for both players and fans, a field that's too wet can also be unsafe for the players.

"A team definitely doesn’t want a torn ACL in a scrimmage game, and weather might make footing slippery," SB Nation said.

Brian Donegan is a meteorologist at weather.com. Follow him on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.


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