An August heat wave will disrupt the opening week of Missouri high school football for the second straight season.
With a forecast calling for temperatures nearing 100 degrees in Kansas City on Friday, several opening-week games have been pushed back to later start times. The teams hope to wait out the hottest portion of the day and play a larger chunk of the game with the sun down.
"We've adjusted practice times all week, so these kids are ready to start whenever," Raymore-Peculiar coach Tom Kruse said. The Panthers will play at Belton at 8 p.m. "We understand the reasoning behind (the late start). If it gets us through a football game without anyone getting hurt, then it's worth it."
Under the rules of the Missouri State High School Activities Association, if the heat index is between 95 and 105 degrees, practices and game times should be altered, which will mean an increase of water breaks Friday.
Never miss a local story.
"We have already discussed with officials and coaches that we will take numerous water and hydration breaks," Center athletics director Brad Sweeten said.
Sixteen games on last year's opening-week slate were rescheduled because of the heat.
Even more have been affected this year. The following games have altered their start times:
• Blue Springs South at Park Hill, 8 p.m.
• East at West Platte, 8 p.m.
• Fort Osage at Raytown South, 8 p.m.
• Lathrop at Van Horn, 8 p.m.
• Lee's Summit at Truman, 8 p.m.
• Liberty at Lee's Summit West, 8 p.m.
• Northeast at African Centered, 8 p.m.
• O'Hara at Richmond, 8 p.m.
• Osceola at Midway, 7:30 p.m.
• Odessa at St. Pius X, 7:30 p.m.
• Park Hill South at Lee's Summit North, 8 p.m.
• Raymore-Peculiar at Belton, 8 p.m.
• Raytown at Liberty North, 8 p.m.
• Ruskin at Grandview, 8 p.m.
• Smithville at Pleasant Hill, 8:05 p.m.
• St. Joseph Central at Kearney, 8 p.m.
• St. Joseph LeBlond at Pembroke Hill, 8 p.m.
• Staley at Blue Springs, 8 p.m.
• University Academy at Center, 7:30 p.m.
• Winnetonka at Oak Park, 8 p.m.
To reach Sam McDowell, send email to email@example.com. Follow him at twitter.com/SamMcDowell11.