Sorenson: Off The Top Of My Head, WednesdayColumns
Man, this conference tournament stuff is brutal. Or should I say ridiculous?
Imagine you are a college baseball player and your game has gone into 17 innings before you win. Then you are asked to play a 12 noon baseball game the next day. And keep in mind a noon start time means showing up at the stadium at 10am and getting into warming up at 10:15am. C’mon. Most of us at that age would’ve been just crawling back into our beds after a long, fun night at that time. That’s when a “good night’s sleep” would start. Okay, okay, if we were on the baseball team that’d mean getting into bed at around 5am or so instead, sure.
Now imagine having to play a baseball game that helps decide your entire season at noon the following day. That’s the atrocity that is conference tournaments. Yet, we have an endless amount of games that seemed to start at about that same time on day two of the conference tournament week. Just not fair.
But it’s okay, I’m sure each and every team has an unpaid assistant coach making the hotel rounds at midnight, checking to make sure all of the “student-athletes” were in their bed at bed check. Yes, that means not a single one of them were placing a bunch of pillows and a dummy head in a strategic fashion, Escape From Alcatraz-style, to fake them out while they were out on the town tripping the light fantastic.
The reason I’m bringing this up is because the LSU-Mississippi State game which started at 8:20pm Central Time, finally came to an end at 1:02am Pacific Time. That means it ended at 3:02am Hoover time. A six-hour, 43-minute game. 552 pitches. This was the first game to ever finish after 2am Eastern Time, by over and hour and one minute. Damn. And now the Tigers are having to play the second game on Thursday, expected to be about a 12 noon start. Good luck with that five hour sleep time… or less.
For the record there were other late night finishes. The Big 10’s Nebraska-Minnesota game ended at 12:15am Omaha time. And that was tame, by today’s standard. The Conference USA game between Western Kentucky and Old Dominion ended at 1:47am Biloxi time.
Just for comparison’s sake to this MSU win, here are the end times for some of today’s other late night games…
– High Point’s 6-2 win over Gardner-Webb ended at 11:36pm.
– Oklahoma State’s 5-2 win over TCU ended at 11:33pm Central time.
– Jacksonville’s 12-11 win over Lipscomb ended at 12:03am Eastern time.
– Rhode Island’s 2-1 win over St. Louis ended at 12:19am Eastern time.
– ULM’s upset of Texas State started at 10:11pm and ended at 1:05am Eastern time.