The Washington Times - September 10, 2008, 02:06PM

Maryland’s game against Eastern Michigan on Sept. 20 will start at 1 p.m. And that has some fans wondering what happened to the 6 p.m. start time for untelevised games.

But there’s an added wrinkle. ESPN360 will provide an Internet broadcast of the game.

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So a basic question is this: Does ESPN360 or the school determine the kickoff time?

Turns out it’s the school, according to Maryland senior associate athletic director for external operations Brian Ullmann.

Apparently, Maryland has heard from fans in the past offering support for both early afternoon and early evening kickoffs when all other things are equal (i.e. no TV network wants to bother with airing the game) and decided to give a 1 p.m. start a look in another week and a half.

With a night game, there’s more time to tailgate and revel in the college football atmosphere, and it gives parents times to take their kids to rec league games and then come to Byrd in the evening.

The benefit of an early game is that fans can still salvage their evening plans. That, and there is something a bit traditional about a college football game in the early afternoon. From a reporter’s point of view, it’s always better to start as early as possible, though never-ending blogging responsibilities have sort of made every moment a deadline situation in some way or another.

Anyway, does anyone here have a take on what game times are the best and which start times are the worst?

Patrick Stevens