For Championship Week, let’s quickly point out that the hard choices a viewer has to make are confined to three days rather than all seven. On Monday and Tuesday of this week, the small conference tournaments host their semifinals and title games while the big conferences gear up for their shindigs later in the week. On Wednesday, some of the big conferences begin their tournaments, but a lot of the offerings are matchups between a 5 seed and a 12, or between a 6 and an 11.
Here’s an important note to digest: In the NCAA tournament, a 5-12 game is an interesting game. In a conference tournament, a 12 seed is a last-place team in a 12-team conference. Similarly, a 10 seed is a last-place team in a 10-team league such as the Big East or Big 12. Therefore, on Wednesday, you’re picking through scraps. There’s no reason to call in sick on that day. If you see a matchup with the slightest degree of bubble significance, you won’t find much competition in the same time window from other games on other networks.
The fourth day of Championship Week that really doesn’t require any decision making is Selection Sunday. Only a handful of games are played that day, and the ACC Tournament final is always the signature event in the early window at 1 p.m. Eastern. The Atlantic 10 final is important only if you have a bubble-team interest or an emotional attachment to a team. This year, the SEC Tournament final moves from 1 Eastern to 3:15 (ESPN), but with Florida lording itself over the rest of the SEC, it’s likely that it will be the undercard to the Big Ten final at 3:35 p.m. Eastern (CBS). You know what happens next: the Selection Show on CBS, the analysis on ESPN, and the Selection Sunday night 30 for 30 with a college basketball theme.
The job of this piece is to give you, the viewer, a way to deal with Thursday through Saturday. Naturally, Thursday and Friday – especially during the day sessions – will be harder to manage if you’re at work, but Saturday is also quite cluttered in the midday hours.
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