They're not starting these games at 5:00 A.M., so that's a good thing.
There are 107 days until Championship Weekend unleashes its fury on the City of Throw-Things-at-Santa-Claus. Have you already taken care of everything necessary to make sure that your trip will be nothing but sunshine and rainbows?
- Selling your children on the black market so that you don't need to deal with their whining and complaining about things during that weekend's trio of games? (Also a great way to finance your trip to Philadelphia, for what it's worth.)
- Bought a portable meat smoker the size of a port-a-potty so that you can slow-cook six full-size boars and, if necessary, a 10-point buck on-site? Don't forget the oil drum of rub!
- Assembled your emergency "Robot Apocalypse Preparedness Kit" -- a sign that says "I DO NOT HAVE NUTS AND BOLTS INSIDE OF ME; I AM A HUMAN, NOT ROBOT SUSTENANCE"; magnets; and a homemade flamethrower fashioned in your garage (not to keep the robots at bay (there is no hope) but to kill other humans so that you ensure that you're the last living organism on the planet before "Robotopia" is established fully) -- just in case Philadelphia becomes the epicenter for the end of mankind?
Yes? Good. Then you're just about ready to make the 2013 iteration of Championship Weekend the best one yet. Except for one thing: When is all of this nonsense actually happening? Good question, friend. To the press release!
The game times and networks for the 2013 NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championships have been announced.
Quarterfinal contests will be held at noon ET May 18 and 2:30 p.m. May 19 at Capital One Field at Byrd Stadium in College Park, Md., and Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The quarterfinal action in Maryland will air live on ESPN2, while games held in Indianapolis will be live on ESPNU.
Championship weekend at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia will begin on May 25. The Division I semifinals are set for 2:30 and 5 p.m. ET, both airing live on ESPN2.
The Division I championship game will air live at 1 p.m. May 27 on ESPN.
I like the Championship Weekend game times. The semifinals are late enough in the afternoon where if people are coming into Philadelphia that Saturday they have time to travel at a reasonable hour and still get in a solid few hours of tailgating. And the late semifinal game ends early enough to enjoy some parking lot tomfoolery postgame and still knock around the city at night. You really can't put together Saturday better than that.
As for Memorial Monday, it's going to be what it's going to be. I like the 1:00 P.M. start: (1) It provides for some reasonable parking lot time before the game to chow down like a fat piece of human excrement; and (2) With the game ending around 3:00 P.M., those that need to navigate traffic on congested highways get a decent head start on the evening crush, allowing them to avoid being in the car until midnight while cursing other drivers that aren't doing anything particularly annoying other than existing. There's never going to be an optimal time to hold the title game on Memorial Day, but the early-afternoon start is probably the best option on the table.
Now, we'll see if people actually start packing the joint again for the Final Four. There aren't any really good excuses that tie to start times this year.