After going all its XXIII years without a single raindrop falling on a single play, the forecast for Sunday's Super Bowl is wet and windy.
The National Weather Service forecasts a 70 percent chance of rain and thunderstorms throughout the day and into the evening. The temperature for the 5:15 p.m. EST kickoff is expected to be in the low 70s, dropping into the upper 60s during the game.The weather service advised fans to carry raincoats and light sweaters. Umbrellas are not permitted in the stadium.
"On the whole, it's not bad football weather," said forecaster Cliff Brock. "It's maybe even better than the heat wave we've been having."
Maybe, but rain would be the last thing the NFL would want to disrupt its showcase.
While no official records are kept on such matters, the NFL says it has never rained during the Super Bowl itself. Rain stopped shortly before the 1975 game between Pittsburgh and Minnesota in New Orleans' Tulane Stadium. Four games have been played in domed stadiums.
"It would be too bad if rain disrupted the game plans," said San Francisco 49ers coach Bill Walsh, "but it will be the same for both teams."
Rain might negate the speed of the 49ers' game-breaking wide receiver Jerry Rice and hurt the San Francisco running game more, too. Cincinnati, with fullback Ickey Woods, is more of a straight-ahead running team.
Bengals coach Sam Wyche said wind would be a bigger problem than rain bcauuse of its affect on the passing games.
The forecast called for winds from southeast at 15-20 mph, possibly gusting to 25 mph and higher.
South Florida temperatures in recent weeks have been in the mid-80s. The change is due to a cold front from the north that brought cloudy, windy and cool weather.
The weather front is expected to move through Miami Sunday afternoon or evening. The earlier in the day it passes the area, the better possibility for improved weather during the game.