Idaho-Florida game canceled after lightning, rain

Lightning strikes near Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field during a weather delay before the game between Florida and Idaho. The game was terminated. (AP Photo/Phil Sandlin)

Lightning strikes near Ben Hill Griffin Stadium at Florida Field during a weather delay before the game between Florida and Idaho. The game was terminated. (AP Photo/Phil Sandlin)

By Mark Long

AP Sports Writer

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The Idaho-Florida game has been canceled because of unsafe field conditions.

No makeup date was scheduled.

Florida Field became unplayable after hours of heavy rain. The season opener for both teams started after a nearly three-hour lightning delay — and then stopped after 10 seconds.

The latest lightning strike within 8 miles of the stadium sent players back to the locker room seconds after the opening kickoff. The game was called about 50 minutes later.

Florida’s Valdez Showers electrified the rain-soaked crowd with a 64-yard kickoff return, giving the Gators great field position. But then lightning was detected.

The game was initially scheduled to start at 7:02 p.m., but it was delayed repeatedly because of nearby lightning.