Why Scheduling This Fall Has Become A Game Of “Jenga”

Jenga is a game first marketed in the 1980’s. It is played with 53 wooden pieces each block three times its width. The blocks are stacked as a tower. The object is for players to remove a block from the tower and placing it at the top level without causing the tower to fall. Scheduling this fall for the “olympic sports” in particular has become a game of Jenga.

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Molly McAndrews winds up against Boston

Most schedules had been completed earlier this spring, and because athletic departments need to save travel money, they  have been tossed aside as each conference restructures along geographic lines. Consider for example the Big East who last week announced that field hockey will split into a north and south division. The north division will consist of Uconn, Providence, Quinnipiac, Temple, the south division is Georgetown, Liberty, ODU, and Villanova. Each division will play each other twice in a double round robin format.

I am assuming that it will be a home and home structure. Filling in the blanks is the challenge.  For example, Liberty is in the South Division and published its schedule at the end of April. As they are in the south division they will not play scheduled games in the regular season with UConn, Providence, Quinnipiac, and Temple. The UConn game was Sep17 @ UConn, Oct 2 Quinnipiac @Liberty, Oct 9 @Providence, and Oct 23 Temple @ Liberty. Presumably, they will substitute games with opponents in their own division. 

The problem will occur in the away game weekend,  at Providence. On that weekend they were expected to play Yale at New Haven. Will they drop the Yale game? Are the Ivies even going to play next season?. It is compounded in that each conference has adapted it own format that may or may not fit existing schedules. Will the Jenga tower remain standing or what has to be done. Are conferences and schools on top of the issue. I don’t know!! Stay tuned!!

 

Published by

William Rappolt

I am past chairman of the Lafayette Friends of Field Hockey and a former BOT member at Lafayette College. My wife and I are members of the Board of Trustees for USA Field Hockey Foundation. I am the retired treasurer of M and T Bank Corporation and a 25 year fan of Division one field hockey

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