49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

January 19, 2012
Seeing red: Harbaugh hoping for a rainy practice


Looks like it might rain, Admiral Jim Harbaugh said today.

"I noticed when I was standing on my balcony today at about 6:20, 6:30, (to the east), looked out and saw a very red sky," Harbaugh at the end of his Thursday press conference. "That means, 'red sky at night, sailor's delight. Red sky in morning, sailor take warning.' So, I anticipate that we'll have some precipitation today, some weather, and that will be a great thing for us.

"Admiral Bull Halsey once said, 'If you're going to fight in the North Atlantic, then you've got to prepare in the North Atlantic,'" Harbaugh continued, perhaps getting his W.W. II admirals confused. "They're anticipating some rain on Sunday. We won't know until Sunday morning until we can check the sky. But I'm excited that we may get some rain today in practice. It will help us prepare for the game on Sunday."

Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio said there are different degrees of bad-weather games, and the 49ers won't entirely know what to expect until Sunday. Generally, however, Fangio said a slick or mucky field will slow down the pass rush. He said if the field conditions get really bad, players will have to switch to longer cleats.

"The players sometimes fight that," he said. "A lot of the players don't like that because it slows them down."

The 49ers have not played in a bad-weather game this season. It was not raining when they began practice Thursday, but it was drizzling - spitting, really - by mid session. The forecast for Santa Clara calls for 90 percent chance of rain tonight and an 80 percent chance tomorrow. That is, Harbaugh is likely to get his wish of practicing in wet conditions.

-- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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