Time is on the mind of everyone this week as clocks were turned back 1 hour on Sunday. Growing up in Northern Indiana, St. Joseph County was one of the few areas of the country that did not observe time change, therefore, half of the year the residents of South Bend would be on Michigan time (Eastern Standard) and the other half of the year would be on Chicago time (Central Standard).
Confused? Good. So was I. It was a nightmare figuring out hockey schedules and whether practice was at 7 p.m. eastern time in Kalamazoo, or did they mean 7 p.m. Indiana time.
With the ability to manipulate time, I have some thoughts on time in sports.
Last week there were a total of 2 high school soccer games scheduled, 1 for boys regional and 1 for girls regional.
The original schedule called for the girl’s soccer game to be played at Spring Mills on Thursday evening at 5 p.m. How convenient for the folks of Hampshire given the 95 minute voyage from Hampshire High to Charles Town. Let’s say you are employed and maintaining employment is high on your priority list. However, you want to witness the 1st Hampshire girl’s soccer regional championship since 2002. Well tough luck pal, take a vacation day or don’t show up at all.
Due to the nasty weather that rolled into the eastern panhandle on Halloween, the regional championship game was postponed to Friday at 5 p.m.
Apparently the sunny skies and warmer temperatures of Saturday afternoon were just too darn convenient to play soccer. The Friday evening game made Trojan fans battle rush hour traffic, endless construction, and lunatic drivers on I-81. In fact, the voyage was so brutal on Friday afternoon, the Trojan media broadcast team parked their car in Winchester as traffic came to a halt for a lengthy period of time due to an accident. Surprise, surprise.
My question is this, why 5 p.m. on Friday?
Is 5 o’clock the only time girls are allowed to play?
Do girls soccer players have trouble seeing the ball in the dark?
Why does it have to be played on a weekday?
Why was it scheduled on the same night a football game was being played?
Speaking of time, and a sport driven around the concept of time, cross country states is the pinnacle of untimely events.
Isn’t it time we allow fans the opportunity to watch high school football on Friday nights then a chance to attend the state cross country meet on Saturday without sucking down a gallon of Red Bull and pulling an all-nighter? What is the concept here? Whatever we can do to make it inconvenient for fans, that's the goal of the SSAC.
I’ve got another time issue this week. Name a sport that plays a sectional and regional championship within the span of 48 hours? If you said Quidditch, please stop reading my column. However, if you knew volleyball features this irrational schedule, pat yourself on the back.
But once again, my question is why?
So, 36 hours after raising a sectional championship plaque into the air on Thursday night, your season can end by noon on Saturday.
What happened to preparation?
What happened to rest, recovery and rejuvenation?
Why not have an opportunity to practice between the 2 biggest tournaments of the year?
I think it’s time we revisit some of these strange occurrences. It’s time the SSAC allows fans (and sports editors) the chance to witness and cover all sports. Thanks for your time. o