As Houston and surrounding areas continue to be inundated with rainfall as a result of Hurricane Harvey, the 2017 AdvoCare Texas Kickoff between BYU and LSU has been moved away from Houston's NRG Stadium.
The Cougars and Tigers will instead open the season at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans on Saturday (9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).
The two teams were originally scheduled to meet in Houston for the annual kickoff game, but Harvey, now classified as a tropical storm, has brought catastrophic flooding to the Houston region since Friday, affecting thousands of homes and making several major roadways and highways impassable.
LSU athletic director Joe Alleva said the school is "well aware of the awful circumstance that led to this move. Every storm is different, but we in Louisiana understand a little about what all of those in Harvey's path are going through right now. It's heartbreaking and our prayers go out to all who are impacted."
LSU has seen several games moved over the years because of weather that either impacted the Tigers or their opponents. Last season, LSU's game against Florida was postponed and moved from Gainesville, Florida, to Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge because of Hurricane Matthew. In 2015, flooding in South Carolina forced the site change from Columbia to Baton Rouge.
Said BYU athletic director Tom Holmoe: "We are sorry for the disruption to BYU fans who purchased tickets and made travel plans for Houston. We hope many of you will be able to make the necessary changes to join us in New Orleans to cheer on the Cougars. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the people in South Texas who are currently facing the devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey."
Saturday's game will mark Ed Orgeron's debut as the Tigers' full-time head coach after serving as LSU's interim head coach for eight games last season. He went 6-2 in his interim stint following the firing of Les Miles. The Tigers finished 8-4 overall in 2016 and are ranked 13th in the Associated Press' preseason top 25 poll.
BYU is entering its second year under Kalani Sitake, who led the Cougars to a 9-4 mark last season, his first as their head coach. The Cougars are unranked heading into the season.