Thursday, August 28, 2014

A few men's basketball scheduling items after ACC & A-10 announcements

Atlantic 10 (conference schedule only)

* It looks like ESPN is preparing for the possibility of a NFL Wild Card game on 1/3/15.  If you look at many of their college basketball games, they have the possibility of two tip times and the bowl game from Birmingham does not have a network confirmed for it.

My guess is that they are planning for at least a 90 minute pregame show.  If the NFL game is a 4:30pm game, they could go with filler programming (maybe one MBK game), the game at 4pm or 4:30pm, a postgame then UNC-Clemson at 8pm.  The bowl game at 1pm on ESPN2 with college basketball to follow it starting at 4pm.

If the NFL game is at 8pm, the bowl game can air on ESPN at 1pm, then North Carolina-Clemson at 4:30pm, then a pregame show at 6:30pm leading into the game.  The college baskeball games could start at 2pm on ESPN2.

Sunday is open for a game on ESPN too, but I think the fluidity of the tip times on ESPN leads me to believe they are being targeted for Saturday.  CBS appears to be earmarked for a Sunday Wild Card game too with UNLV at Kansas with a tip time of "to be determined".

* The North Carolina at Duke game on 2/18, as the first of the two matchups during the regular season, again features the dueling broadcasts of ESPN and the ACC Network, but there is a new twist.  The ACC Network has a split window that evening themselves with Boston College at Florida St. also scheduled for a 9pm tip time.  Forces more folks to tune in to the ESPN telecast of the game if they aren't aware of the availability of the ACC Network's webcast through the conference's website.

* The ACC appears to have at least two College Gameday slots.  On 1/31, either Duke at Virginia or North Carolina at Louisville will air at 7pm.  This particular Saturday appears to have an earlier College Gameday tip time due to ESPN carrying an NBA game at 9pm.

Duke at North Carolina on 3/7 is tentatively scheduled to air at 6pm or 9pm.  It isn't immediately apparent to me whether there is another game at could take the 9pm slot.  Maybe Kansas at Oklahoma or Virginia at Louisville.

The Syracuse at Duke game on 2/28 is also set specifically as an ESPN game, without the ESPN2 designation, so it may end up as the College Gameday game that evening.

* The A-10's schedule released with a couple games missing.  I counted one non-conference game missing from both NBCSN and CBS Sports Network.  From the schedules that were released, it looks like Temple at St. Joseph's and the North Carolina vs. Davidson (at Time Warner Cable Arena) games were missing.  Maybe Pittsburgh vs. Duquesne at CONSOL Energy Center too, but that one looks like Pitt's home game.

The Philly Big 5 game on 12/3 would fit on CBSSN as a doubleheader with Villanova at La Salle on the same evening.  NBCSN has an NHL game that evening at 8pm and usually has a pregame show.

That should leave UNC-Davidson for NBCSN, though they might need to alter the start time from 2pm ET.  NBCSN has a CAA football game scheduled for 3:30pm that day.

* Keep an eye on ESPN2 on Fridays.  Looks like they might be opening a regular college basketball telecast window.  The A-10 has two Friday ESPN2 telecasts this year (1/23: VCU at Saint Louis, 2/6: GW at Dayton) and one Big 12 game (3/6: Texas Tech at Baylor).

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