Fighting Illini Football Lightning Delay

It was a first ever for Memorial Stadium at the U of I–a lightning delay. There were few fireworks on the field, just a few from the corners as the Illini scored, but lots of lightning in the skies. As the tailgaters gathered into Memorial Stadium, a few clouds formed in the west–a harbinger of a long afternoon–and evening!

NCAA regulations require that when lightening occurs within 6 miles there must be a delay of 30 minutes. University of  Illinois regulations set it at 8 miles, so for almost 2 hours the Texas State game was delayed. Here are some photos from our cub reporter:

University of Illinois
The game started with a TD for Illinois on the first play from scrimmage.
Texas State vs Illinois
Then a few clouds gathered and the fans expected a bit of rain as forecasted. Lets hope the Illinois Nebraska game can go on without rain–our Illini need to be able to pass the ball in order to have a chance!
Texas State vs Illinois
Quickly, clouds formed, sprinkles dropped and lightning was heard in the west.
Tailgating parking
The stadium was emptied, the clock was frozen in the second quarter and 1000s of fans stood under the east and west stands.
Tim Beckman at Illinois
The new south scoreboard at Memorial Stadium made it clear–you must leave the stands. and take cover.
U of I
University of Illinois police and other law enforcement people made sure all was clear before the crowd was allowed to return to Memorial Stadium.

This weekend Illinois plays Nebraska in Lincoln and rain is forecasted–lets hope no lightning!

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