James Spann: Much colder air about six days away for Alabama

RADAR CHECK: Almost all of the showers in Alabama at mid-afternoon were south of I-20, over the southern two-thirds of the state.

Otherwise, the sky is mostly cloudy (with a few breaks in the overcast) and temperatures are in the 60s. Showers will end this evening, and as the sky clears late tonight some patchy, dense fog is very possible after midnight and into tomorrow morning.

TOMORROW THROUGH SUNDAY: After a cloudy start, the sky becomes partly sunny tomorrow with a high in the mid to upper 60s. Then, for Saturday and Sunday, we project partly sunny, mild days and fair, cool nights. The high Saturday will be in the upper 60s, followed by low 70s Sunday.

FOOTBALL WEATHER: For the high school playoff games Friday evening, the sky will be mostly fair with temperatures falling through the 50s.

For Auburn fans headed to Atlanta and the SEC Championship game Saturday against Georgia (3 p.m. Central kickoff), there will be no weather worries, of course, inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium. For those walking to the game, the sky will be partly sunny; afternoon temperatures should be in the 60s.

Jacksonville State hosts the Kennesaw State Owls Saturday at Burgess–Snow Field (1 p.m. kickoff). The sky will be partly sunny with temperatures in the 60s during the game.

NEXT WEEK: The big pattern change begins. As a deep upper trough forms over the eastern third of the nation, it will push a cold front into the state Tuesday night. A band of showers and storms is likely ahead of the front; for now, severe storms are not expected. Sharply colder air begins to arrive Wednesday with a brisk north wind; some rain could linger early in the day in the cold air. Then, next Thursday and Friday look cold and dry, with highs in the 40s and lows in the 20s.

Looks like temperatures could remain below average through the latter half of December based on the projected blocked upper air pattern.

HURRICANE SEASON ENDS: Today marks the official end of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season. The season produced 17 named storms, of which 10 became hurricanes, including six major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5) and the first two major hurricanes to hit the continental United States in 12 years. Based on the Accumulated Cyclone Energy index, which measures the combined intensity and duration of the storms during the season and is used to classify the strength of the entire hurricane season, 2017 was the seventh most active season in the historical record dating to 1851 and the most active season since 2005.

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