Category Archives: Sports

Getting served

The dissolution of the University of Colorado’s men’s tennis program is really a story about broader, sadder trends in modern collegiate athletics. I enjoyed the chance to localize and humanize this story with some quotes and thoughts from an area high-school coach and the father of a talented tennis player who had some interesting personal insights into the issue. (Also…writing for the Internet is so interesting because you never can know in advance which subjects are hot buttons for readers. In this instance four people took time to comment. Whoulda thunk it?)

Sticking to the schedule

One of my favorite SportsBiz columns for ColoradoBiz Magazine provides a behind-the-scenes look at how sports leagues figure out which teams will play when, and where. From June 2005, here’s a profile of a math genius and his work.

Puzzle Flickr Olga Berrios 4-16

The Nuggets couldn’t play at home during the last weekend in February because of back-to-back Freestyle Motocross events at Pepsi Center. Instead, the team was in Memphis on Friday and in New Orleans on Sunday night, the latter game dictating the Nuggets couldn’t play a day game Monday. Which was perfectly fine, because the players had to travel back to Denver anyway for a game Tuesday night. Which would have left Wednesday available for a home game, except that Pepsi Center was reserved for an Avalanche-Predators game that night.

A Rubik’s cube is child’s play compared to the computational puzzle that surrounds sports-league scheduling. Trying to squish thousands of games into the calendar while accounting for everything from Paul McCartney concerts to network TV demands is about as easy as nailing a three with Allen Iverson in your face. Scheduling means diving into a muddy brew of restrictions, parameters, rules, quirks, unanticipated changes, divisional conflicts, travel limitations and dozens of other ingredients that clamor for consideration. Continue reading Sticking to the schedule