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Pac-12 Confidential

Bud Withers offers an inside look at the Pac-12 Conference and the national college scene.

September 28, 2013 at 5:53 PM

Ruminations on a messy college-football Saturday . . .

We’re sitting here at CenturyLink Field (indoors, blessedly), for what promises to be perfectly ugly weather conditions for the Stanford-Washington State football game.

People out of our area might not realize this, but we don’t have weather like this — at least in late September. I bumped into Bob Robertson, the longtime Washington State radio man, and he said as much. When I asked him if he could remember such weather this early in the season, he said, “We don’t have weather like this anytime.”

I covered Husky football for nine years and can’t recall a football day quite like this. In fact, during the period that CenturyLink was being built, and the Seahawks played at Husky Stadium, they played in a couple of really lousy days after the college season ended. It called attention to the fact that it hardly ever rained in earnest during the September-November months of the college season — despite popular myth.

Tonight, CenturyLink has been having some dry periods, but interspersed with spells of sheets of rain propelled by winds from the south. The flags on the south-goalpost uprights are relatively still, fluttering a bit, while the ones at the north end are feeling a stiffer breeze. And the WSU flags lining the sides of the Hawk’s Nest seats at the north end have been virtually straight out at times. All that may mean that the conditions on the south half of the field are going to be more favorable than the north.

You’d think the conditions favor the running team, Stanford. Of course, WSU quarterback Connor Halliday may have had to rely on a short passing game anyway because of the Cardinal’s strong pass rush, so we’ll see. It’s too early to gauge the crowd, but it figures that the projection of 50,000 will fall significantly short. There were 37,500 tickets sold as of late Thursday, and this isn’t a day for a big walk-up crowd.

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