Iowa Wrestling: Full Friday of Action

Hawkeye wrestling fans are excited about the opening of the 2008-2009 season, but some aren't happy about missing the first dual of the season held in Carver Hawkeye Arena. The problem? The contest against the ASU Sun Devils starts at 3:30pm in the afternoon.

Some hardcore wrestling fans will be lucky enough to get the day off work to attend the Iowa City Duals on Friday, November 21st. Iowa will wrestle Iowa Central at 9 a.m., Coe at 10:30 a.m., and Minnesota State-Mankato at noon in the North Gym at the University of Iowa Field House. The Hawkeyes haven't wrestled in the Field House since 1983.

But that triple-dip of Brands brothers isn't the end of the day for wrestling lovers.

Iowa will wrestle a fourth meet on Friday, a 3:30pm contest against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Carver Hawkeye Arena.

Given this heapin' helpin' of Hawkeye domination, why are some fans unhappy?

The first reason for frowning is the workday conflict. That really can't be overcome for some and will do it's best to give you updates from the IC Duals so you can check in on your work breaks (wink-wink). It also is understandable that the "duals" format isn't something that can kick off at 7pm with four or five hours of wrestling to be contested.

But, what about that ASU dual? Why 3:30pm? Wouldn't it make sense for that to be an evening start so folks who were stuck at work all day can see their Hawkeyes after they finish their 9-5?

On the surface, it would be easy to place the blame on Iowa's volleyball team. They are hosting Ohio State at 7:30pm on Friday. Wrestling fans might say, "Just move the volleyball game. Iowa wrestling is more important. They're defending national champs. It's wrestling. It's Iowa!"

Not so fast my friend. It's not volleyball's fault.

Event schedules are a funny thing at Iowa. We have several sports sharing one facility. They all have to play nice in the same sandbox. They have to share. But how?

It all starts with the Big Ten Conference (BTC). The BTC sets the master schedule for all conference contests. Conference contests are slotted before non-conference match-ups. Fall sports schedules are set and released before winter sports. So, a conference volleyball match (fall sport) is scheduled before a non-conference wrestling meet (winter sport).

So, Friday night is out. How about Sunday night? The guys do wrestle on Sundays during the conference season. Seems to work out fine, attendance-wise. Won't work. ASU is squeezing two meets into this road trip, taking on the Cyclones on Sunday. Does that make it ISU's fault? Why not swap dates and let ISU take the Friday date and give Iowa Sunday. ISU is already booked for Friday night (Wisconsin). Add to that the information that there are already TWO basketball games in Carver on Sunday, November 23 (women in the Hawkeye tourney final at 2:35pm and men at 5:05pm). It's like you're staring at that Jenga block tower and you know that no matter what move you make the whole thing is going to come crashing down.

Does that make it easier to understand why the ASU wrestling dual starts at 3:30pm on Friday? Yes. Does it make it any easier spending the last two hours of the already-too-long work week stuck behind a desk while your Hawkeyes are sticking it to the Sun Devils? Of course not.

Hawkeye Nation will try to keep you connected.

NEXT WEEK: Why is the ISU dual on a Saturday?

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