James Spann: Rain ends in Alabama early today; sun by afternoon

James Spann has the midweek forecast for Alabama from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

RADAR CHECK: Bands of showers and thunderstorms are moving across Alabama early this morning; we have not had any issues with severe storms, but gradient winds are strong (not related to thunderstorms), gusting to 30 mph at times. Rain will end from west to east early this morning, and the sky will be sunny by late morning or early afternoon. Temperatures are mild this morning — in fact, near 70 degrees at places like Tuscaloosa and Muscle Shoals at daybreak, but they will fall through the 60s today with a brisk west wind.

Tonight will be clear; we drop into the 37- to 41-degree range early Thursday morning.

THANKSGIVING/BLACK FRIDAY: Thursday will be a cool, dry Thanksgiving day for Alabama with sunshine in full supply and a high in the upper 50s. The weather stays dry Friday; the sky will be partly sunny with a high in the low 60s.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: Clouds will increase Saturday ahead of the next storm system, and showers and thunderstorms are likely Saturday night into early Sunday morning. A few strong storms are possible, but again there will be very little surface-based instability, and for now the severe-weather threat looks low. The sky will clear Sunday afternoon, but expect a brisk northwest wind with temperatures falling through the 50s during the day.

NEXT WEEK: The weather looks very quiet for much of the week with cool days and chilly nights. Some rain could possibly return late in the week on Friday, Dec. 6, but for now it doesn’t look like a big rain event.

IRON BOWL: For the biggest game of the year in Alabama (2:30 p.m. kickoff Saturday at Jordan-Hare Stadium), the sky will be mostly cloudy with a kickoff temperature in the upper 60s. It still looks like the rain arrives after the game is over, generally after 7 p.m. South winds during the game will average 10-18 mph.

OTHER FOOTBALL FORECASTS: For high school playoff games Friday night, the sky will be clear with temperatures falling through the 50s.

Saturday, UAB takes on North Texas at Apogee Stadium in Denton, Texas (3 p.m. Central kickoff). The sky will feature a mix of sun and clouds, and a passing shower is possible during the game. Temperatures will be generally in the mid to upper 60s at kickoff, falling to near 60 by the final whistle.

ON THIS DATE IN 1898: A powerful storm known as the “Portland Gale” impacted the coastal areas of New England on Nov. 26-27, 1898. The storm formed when two areas of low pressures merged off the coast of New Jersey and traveled up the east coast. This storm produced hurricane-force winds in Nantucket and sank more than 150 boats and ships.

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