It's a little too early to draw a definite conclusion, but it definitely appears right now like we will not see the kind of cataclysm that accompanied Hurricane Katrina. For one, New Orleans has been spared a direct hit, as the eye of the hurricane will be passing significantly west of the city. In fact, in the last days, the hurricane appeared to be heading directly for my parents' house in Gonzales, which is about 60 miles west of New Orleans, and now it appears the storm center will pass significantly to the west of that.
I talked to my mother earlier today, and they are so far doing fine. There are strong gusts, but power is still on and everything appears to be more or less OK for the moment. They're still a long way from out of this, but all indications are this will not be too bad for them.
This means New Orleans has received a glancing blow. And while I do not want to minimize the impact this storm has on the people directly in its path, it is a relief that the most vulnerable and most highly populated area in the cone of danger appears to have escaped the worst of it.
Right now, CNN is reporting that some levees along the Industrial Canal are having "splash over", but this is supposedly just surge from the Gulf coming up the waterways, and it is expected that the surge should go back down the waterways before too very long, and the levees should hold.
Of course, Armageddon could be just around the corner again, but let's not think negatively.
While we are careful not to get caught up in trifling matters, this publication is, after all, about football and sports, and I don't think it's too early to begin assessing how this will all impact the football game that is supposed to be played this coming weekend.
It looks like Baton Rouge will be fine, which means that the facilities and the venues for the game should be fine. The team and the stadium should be ready to go by Saturday. It remains to be seen how the fans will be doing, especially those west of Baton Rouge on to Houston, as those guys are more directly in its path.
The other significant question is when and how people will be able to return to evacuated areas. There were bad traffic problems leaving New Orleans, and if those people try to return as quickly as they left, there will be bad traffic problems again going the other way. Then, once they get there, will they be able to do anything other than clean up their houses and yards and working areas?
All in all, it appears that LSU will be prepared to have a game, but there may not be any fans there to see it.
Then there's the question of whether Troy will be able to make it in.
I am hopeful this game will go off, but it appears that once again it may not be a full house.