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OSU-Tulsa fiasco: Only folks in Hawaii could appreciate this kickoff time

COMMENTARY: If the weather-delayed start to the Oklahoma State-Tulsa game won't cause teams to reconsider 9 p.m. starts, nothing will.
By JOHN HELSLEY, Staff Writer, jhelsley@opubco.com Published: September 17, 2011

Sometime after 9 p.m. Saturday night, Cowboys offensive coordinator Todd Monken helped himself to the snack line running behind the visiting coaches booth at H.A. Chapman Stadium.

A few chips, a dab of French onion dip, handful of popcorn.

And no, his offense wasn't in control against Tulsa, the game wasn't in hand, like Lafayette and Arizona were previously at that hour.

The game hadn't even started.

Lightning and the threat of high winds demanded a delay, which pushed kickoff toward normal curfew for the Cowboys.

Anybody still on board with scheduled 9 p.m. kickoffs in the central time zone?

So much for TV exposure, unless you're seriously trying to expand the brand, say, to Maui. So much for TU's big home game with the cross-state rival, and all the benefits it brings, as a line of taillights were spotted exiting campus before school officials even started talking about Plan B. Think folks might be asking for refunds on those $95 ducats – the most expensive single-game tickets in program history?

We're still seeking confirmation on the rumor that the Cowboys considered switching to a previously unknown 49th uniform combination: pajamas.

Way back when the time for kickoff was revealed, OSU coach Mike Gundy asked a handful of writers, “Who's responsible for that start time?”

TU, that's who.

Sure, weather happens. It's not TU's fault that a storm rolled in and lightning chased fans inside to the nearby Reynolds Center, where people joked of a “sold-out crowd.”

It's already been a weird weather month, with a slew of games delayed, even big games like Notre Dame-South Florida and West Virginia-Marshall, which was eventually called in the fourth quarter. Saturday night in Waco, lightning caused a second-quarter delay and a decision to skip halftime and reduce the third and fourth quarters to 12 minutes. With the Bears rolling 48-0, the game was called after three quarters.

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