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Robison: ‘Tis the season (Oct. 11)

By Matthew Robison | Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The most wonderful time of the year is almost upon us. As much as I love the holidays, I’m not talking about Christmastime. I’m talking about that few-day stretch when every major sport is active.

It’s like all the planets in the solar system coming into perfect alignment, the entire orchestra playing perfectly in tune or the beat coming through your headphones perfectly in pace with your stride. Except it happens every year at the same time.

About a month ago, we broke out of the summer rut in which the MLB is the only active major sport. Soon enough, everything will be happening at once. Everything will be perfect for but a few fleeting days.

At the end of October, the NFL and NCAA football will be in the heart of their schedules, the World Series will be underway and the NBA regular season will have started. Gary Bettman and the NHL tried to ruin it this year, but ESPN is soothing our worries by showing games from the KHL (Russia’s premiere professional hockey league).

As a sports fan, this is the most wonderful time of the year. Even though baseball is not my favorite sport, my favorite moment in sports is the final pitch of the World Series. I love seeing the pure elation as the rest of the team piles onto the closing pitcher. But, in a different way, it marks the beginning of the winter season, the most jam-packed of them all.

December brings bowl season, college basketball conference showdowns and marquee NBA matchups. January brings us the BCS games and frigid NFL playoff games. In February, we get the Super Bowl. In March, the Madness. In April, baseball starts again.

But rarely do we get to experience all four at once. So when that fruitful few days finally comes around, sports fans, let us bask in the glory that is overlapping seasons. Let us park ourselves in front of the television, seamlessly flipping through the national sports networks, feeling the warmth on our lap as our computers bring us live-streaming games.

Just when the South Bend weather decides to smack us in the face with a few cold mornings, rest assured knowing the sporting world is about to hit its peak.

Mark your calendars. From Oct. 27 to Nov. 1, there will be 15 NFL games played. During that same time period, Games 4 through 7 of the World Series will be played, 57 FBS college football games will take place and the NBA regular season will kick off with 14 games scheduled over that stretch. Had the NHL lockout not happened, I’m not confident I would have been able to keep up with it all.

But as it is, the greatest week – in my opinion – in sports is nearly upon us. As a fan of nearly all sports, I greatly appreciate the privilege to be able to watch all of them at once.

Certainly some will take precedence over others. As much as I would like to watch everything, my time (and my basic cable subscription) will not allow me to do so. If my beloved Orioles make it to the World Series, to those games I will be glued. If not, I will still tune in for that ecstasy-inducing final out. Of course, I will be watching Notre Dame play Oklahoma, which could be a matchup of two top-10 teams by the time it occurs. Thankfully, my hometown Ravens have a bye, so I can split my time between the 15 other NFL games that weekend.

It might sound like one can be easily overwhelmed. But in this case, I don’t think it’s possible to have too much of a good thing, and I think plenty of us out there would agree. In the immortal words of The Lonely Island, “We like sports. And we don’t care who knows.”

Sports fans, join me in celebrating the most wonderful time of the year.

Contact Matthew Robison at