As of 11am, October 4th, the National Hurricane Center has begun official advisories on Tropical Depression 16— the current projected path looks like this:
At this time, areas north of Tampa, Florida westward through Mobile, Alabama are within the cone of the probable path of the storm.
As with any forecast, the NHC provides reliable, timely updates that supercede any other thoughts or prognostications here or anywhere else.
Having said that, I'll share with you some of my thoughts as an industry meteorologist and Ph.D.
One of the first things that strikes me about this forecast is that it is the first official advisory *and* it predicts TD16 to become Hurricane Nate in less than 4 days. That is significant, to go from not-even-a-tropical-storm to a full-fledged hurricane so quickly. Additionally, we see this wording in the technical discussion section from the NHC on TD16:
As if that is not worrisome enough, consider this:
They used very similar wording when Maria had just formed.— Andy Hazelton (@AndyHazelton) October 4, 2017
Maria, if you'll recall, underwent rapid intensification from a Category 1 to Category 5 hurricane in roughly 12 hours.
There is a lot of uncertainty at this point in the track and intensity of this storm. But if this storm stays over the hot water of the Yucatan channel as shown above, the Category 1 winds prediction is likely too low with a very real chance of a major hurricane heading toward the U.S.
We'll know more as time goes forward, but the Tomahawk Nation connection here is the potential impact on the UM-FSU game slated for 3:30pm on Saturday. While it is too early to predict the impacts and the arrival of any storm winds, the timeline is important; effects may dominate the area sometime Sunday. While this seems to not directly affect the Saturday game, you have to consider that the threat of a major hurricane will have evacuation considerations that supercede university activities leading up to the storm's arrival.
We'll keep you updated with any football-related impacts from the storm here at TN.