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ESPN's schedulers doubt Calhoun, get what they deserve

Hey, if I was running a TV network, you know what type of game I'd like to feature? A nice, juicy rivalry game between teams that are respectively ranked No. 4 and No. 6 in the country. I mean, that sounds like one hell of a matchup, the type of thing that you'd want to put front and center in the middle of January or February, when people really start tuning into college basketball.

Of course, I don't run a TV network, unlike, say, the people over at ESPN, who must be kicking themselves a little now, because they made one very big mistake: they doubted Jim Calhoun. As I pointed out back in September, ESPN's Big Monday lineup made it clear that while UConn was enough of a brand name to get on TV, the powers that be thought the Huskies were going to struggle mightily. As a result, tomorrow's UConn game against Pittsburgh will be played at an odd time (8:30), on ESPN2 and opposite Monday Night Football, instead of being the much-hyped, late-season marquee match-up it should be. 

Can I understand why ESPN did this? Sure. Is there still a chance that the wheels could come off the bus for UConn when they get into the meat of their schedule? Of course. But that doesn't mean this isn't a big missed opportunity for the network. As always, the lesson is: Don't doubt Calhoun, because he's going to get you in the long run.