You've packed off the kids to spend spring break with their aunt and uncle in Myrtle Beach. The man or woman cave is stocked with enough food and drink to make a doomsday prepper jealous.
And you've sent notice to the office that you need to take some “personal days” to get your head together.
You've clearly got a case of March Madness. To help see you through this crucial time of year, we have put together some answers to frequently asked questions about America's favorite collegiate sport.
Q: Where can I find the games?
A: Warm up your TV set. The broadcast partnership between CBS and Turner Sports is still in force, and will be for many years. CBS will air 26 games, including the Final Four and the national championship game. TBS will carry 16 games, truTV has 13 and TNT 12.
Q: Where do I find Syracuse's opening game ?
A: You'll have to locate truTV to see the Orange's 10 p.m. game Thursday against Montana. Where does one find truTV? Read on:
• Time Warner Cable, Channel 74 (standard definition), Ch. 859 (high definition).
• Verizon FiOS: 183 (SD), 683 (HD).
• DirecTV: Ch. 246 (SD, HD).
• Dish Network: 204 (SD, HD).
The play-by-play man for Syracuse's opener is Brian Anderson, who does the same for baseball's Milwaukee Brewers. Anderson also calls college basketball games for the Big Ten Network and ESPN.
Dan Bonner, a longtime CBS analyst who played for the University of Virginia in the 1970s, is the analyst. Marty Snider will be the sideline reporter, a role he performs on TNT coverage of the NBA. He is also a pit reporter on TNT's NASCAR broadcasts.
Q: What's the setup for watching the games online this year?
A: March Madness Live is the official online tool. It is available on more platforms than ever, and you need to register and prove you have a TV provider in order to access every game online. However, there are ways to enjoy many of the games without registering.
First, all of the games airing on CBS TV can be streamed for free on MML.
Second, for the games being televised on the three Turner stations, MML is offering a four-hour preview, no registration required.
The a la carte feature offered last year — paying $3.99 for full access to March Madness Live — is not available this year. That means that in order to stream games to your heart's content, you must pony up for a monthly package from a TV provider.
It will be interesting to see how this is handled next year, when reportedly the Final Four and championship games may move to Turner Sports stations. For the final game, how firm a line will the NCAA and its broadcast partners draw to force viewers into having a cable or satellite subscription to see the championship decided?
Q: Where do I find March Madness Live?
A: You can launch it online from ncaa.com/marchmadness, CBSSports.com and BleacherReport.com.
Q: What about mobile platforms?
A: Glad you asked. There is a March Madness live app for sale in Apple's App store, and one for Android devices in Google Play.
Q: Wither Gus Johnson?
A: Wither? Really? Johnson signed a contract two years ago with Fox, so no March Madness for him. Johnson will play a prominent role in Fox's World Cup soccer coverage in 2014. He also did some basketball this year on the Big Ten Network. He is probably studying up for the World Cup by learning how to say “The slipper still fits!” in Portuguese.
Q: I will have one game on my TV, and others on my laptop. But it seems like I should have a third screen going. What would you suggest?
A: Other than remembering to take all your meds, I would fire up your smart phone or tablet and crank up Twitter. March Madness Live will incorporate a Twitter feed under its Social Arena feature, and you can join the conversation on Twitter.com using the hashtag #marchmadness.
Q: Where do I turn for help with filling out my bracket?
A: Start with the picks made by News Senior Sports Columnist Jerry Sullivan, which can be found on page B2.
Or, try the forecast of New York Times stats guru Nate Silver, in the paper's Five Thirty Eight blog. Silver's front-runners are: Louisville (23.8 percent chance of winning it all), Indiana (18.4 percent), Florida (13.2 percent), Kansas (7.9 percent), and Duke (6 percent). Others of note: Michigan (2.5 percent), Syracuse (1.8 percent), Albany (.1 percent).
Ken Pomeroy, found at kenpom.com, is another statistical sage of college hoops. The top five teams, according to his rankings are: Florida, Louisville, Indiana, Gonzaga and Ohio State.
Remember, all selections are for entertainment purposes only.