December 22, 2010
There's probably not a better match between a game and a team this bowl season than between Navy and the Poinsettia Bowl: The Midshipmen will be greeted by a large military population in San Diego, and a quality opponent they have a chance to beat in homestanding San Diego State. As of Wednesday morning, they should also feel right in their element in Qualcomm Stadium, which was completely submerged by heavy rains less than 36 hours before Thursday night's kickoff. From the San Diego Union Tribune:
Poinsettia Bowl executive director Bruce Binkowski sought to dampen speculation the soaked field wouldn't be ready for Thursday's game.
"The field will be ready," he said. "The ground crew will be working all night long. There might be a few soft spots where water sunk in, but the field will be ready." […]
Darren Pudgil, spokesman for Mayor Jerry Sanders, said that workers began trying to pump out the water after the rain let up in the morning. Shortly after 11 a.m., Pudgil said, "They're working to drain it as quickly as possible." Pudgil said a tarp has been on the field since Thursday but that 50 percent of the field was submerged.
The same system trapped dozens of people in homes, hotels and cars, caused accidents and structural damage, forced evacuations and reportedly washed away much of the beach in downtown Laguna Beach. The status of the field for Thursday night could depend on how much rain continues to fall, which isn't certain according to forecasts. Here's a video of the Qualcomm parking lot Wednesday afternoon.
There's just nothing worse than a soggy Poinsettia Bowl. But if worse comes to worse, the Middies can always break out the dive gear and maybe drop in an LCAC or two. For fans in the lower rows, though, a standard life vest and some nose plugs ought to do just fine.
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Photos via the San Diego Union Tribune.
Matt Hinton is on Twitter: Follow him @DrSaturday.