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So Your Team Plays the Late Game: How to Cope

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Life is one big slap after another.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Hartford Practice
Ryan Cline will be well rested. Will you?
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Purdue doesn’t play until roughly 10:00 PM Eastern time tonight. For someone like me who normally goes to bed between 10:00-11:00 PM each night (if I’ve not already fallen asleep on the couch) this is going to be a struggle. If you’re anything like me I wanted to offer some advice on how to get through the wait of today but also how to make sure you stay awake tonight and are able to work tomorrow. Not everyone is going to be able to make this list work for them so don’t come at me in the comments.

If you’re like me and are stuck at work today and can’t watch much if any basketball you’ll likely be ready and raring to go when you get home. This is just adrenaline and is a mistake. Don’t trust your body. Ultimately, if you can, try to eat a hearty meal and take a nap. If you’ve got kids or even a rambunctious dog this may not be able to be done but it’s at least worth a shot and is the number one way to maintain your energy level as the day goes on. Pro tip though, make sure to set an alarm. The last thing you want is to put your head on the pillow at 7:30 PM planning to wake up at 9:00 PM and then suddenly you wake up and it’s 6:00 AM Friday.

Now you may be saying, “But I hate naps and never take them! They make me feel worse!” and to that I say, I agree. Taking a nap in the middle of the day or later just makes me feel gross. I always wake up feeling worse than when I laid down. For people that fall into this boat you’ve always got the lovely fall back of caffeine. However you choose to get it whether that’s coffee, pop, energy drink, etc. you’ve gotta make sure you have it. Some people swear by the stuff and it keeps them up. I personally don’t seem to notice much of an impact but I also don’t drink coffee. So we continue onward.

Might I recommend snacks? Look, if you’re looking for a list that’s gonna be good for your health I recommend looking elsewhere. I’ve personally always found that having plenty of snacks around helps me stay awake. Grab yourself a bag of Doritos, a plate of mozzarella sticks, maybe some Oreos, or Ben & Jerry’s. These are some of my favorite items in case any sponsor is out there looking to make an absolutely ridiculous sponsorship of me. There’s something to be said for making your own snacks and if you want to go that route might I suggest a nice dip of taco meat and velveeta. Not quite the velveeta and Rotel mixture of the early BTN heyday but it’s much better in my opinion.

Finally, for the last option if none of these work for you is to toughen up. It’s gonna be difficult for all of us unless you live on the West Coast like Dr. Juan Crespo. 10:00 PM tipoffs aren’t my ideal but at the same time it allows time to watch all of the other games without the stress of Purdue’s game so we can enjoy more of the day. I’m gonna whine about this just as much as anyone but I’m gonna suck it up and make it through. This happens once a year and together we can all climb this mountain together. It’s always gonna be an uphill battle, but it’s about what’s waiting on the other side. It truly is the climb.

For Friday morning I suggest getting a nice workout in the morning to boost that energy.

If you’ve got the vacation or sick time available Friday is the perfect day to use it. If you don’t it’s gonna be a slog. You’ll miss more basketball games, more thrilling finishes, and more upsets as you go through the work day one excruciating minute at a time. I believe in us, we are Boilermakers. Together we can get through anything that the NCAA throws at us.