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Mizzou-LSU football game moved to Columbia as Hurricane Delta strengthens

By Eric Blum
Columbia Daily Tribune
Missouri football players take Faurot Field prior to the season opener against Alabama. The Tigers weren't scheduled to return home until Oct. 17 but the Southeastern Conference is expected to announce Wednesday morning that it is moving Saturday's scheduled game at LSU to Columbia because of the impending effects of Hurricane Delta.

Missouri won't have to wait until homecoming for its next game at Faurot Field. 

The Tigers will host LSU on Saturday at 11 a.m. instead of the originally scheduled Saturday night contest in Baton Rouge, multiple sources tell the Columbia Daily Tribune and USA Today Network. 

Officials from the Southeastern Conference, as well as both schools, decided to move the contest from Louisiana to Columbia due to the possible effects of Hurricane Delta.

An official announcement of the changes from the SEC is expected Wednesday morning around 9 a.m., sources tell the Tribune. 

The National Weather Service on Tuesday upgraded Hurricane Delta to a Category 4 storm with maximum winds up to 130 miles per hour. The hurricane is set to make landfall on Louisiana’s gulf coast by early Saturday morning. Baton Rouge is just more than 100 miles inland. 

An LSU athletic department official contacted by the USA Today Network would not deny the report and said there would be an official word one way or the other on Wednesday morning.

LSU has never played in Columbia, even before Missouri joined the Southeastern Conference in 2012. 

Missouri head coach Eli Drinkwitz reiterated Tuesday afternoon that this season requires adapting to changes on a daily basis. 

"Every day is a new day, a new challenge," Drinkwitz said during a Zoom call with reporters. "I'm operating with the sense that we're going down to play a football game on Saturday at 8 because I haven't been told anything different. And so, that as of right now is the plan until I'm told that we're doing something different." 

LSU is 1-1 on the season and ranked No. 16 in the Amway Coaches Poll, while Missouri is 0-2. 

“We are closely monitoring Hurricane Delta and are in close communication with SEC and University of Missouri Athletics officials on contingency plans should they become necessary,” LSU wrote in a statement Tuesday morning. “At this time, it is too early to make a determination on any impact the storm may have on Saturday’s football game against Missouri. The game remains scheduled for 8 p.m. (Central time) on Saturday in Tiger Stadium. We will continue to update our fans throughout the week as more information becomes available.” 

Missouri and LSU share the same bye week in the SEC’s remodeled 10-game conference schedule, with an open date of Nov. 7. That open date, as well as Dec. 12 – the week in between scheduled regular-season finales and the SEC championship game – were designed to give teams flexibility in case of postponed contests due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

USA Today Network's Glenn Guilbeau contributed to this story.