Holbrook: Ranking the top sports months as October nears

One of many touchdown celebrations as Iowa State would score over 70 points against Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday.

Trevor Holbrook

This time of year, the temperature in Iowa transitions to fall, the leaves change color and October sits on the horizon. We’ve officially arrived at the best time of year for sports.

Using October as the benchmark, let’s break down the long list of sports greatness we get to witness this month.

Major League Baseball’s 162-game season comes to a close, and the postseason picks up for arguably the best playoff option of the major U.S. sports. Meanwhile, college football enters the portion of the schedule filled with conference games, and we start to get a clearer picture of which teams are contenders.

Similarly, the NFL approaches the meat of the regular season where coaches start getting fired and quarterback swaps occur while the top teams begin emerging in their divisions.

Toward the end of the month, the NBA opens up its regular season and the off-court drama quickly follows. On the college side for the month, the games mostly don’t begin until November, but the hype and storylines of the season begin to take structure in October.

If you’re into NASCAR, the heat of its playoff also takes place in October with the champion being crowned in the following month.

With a more local scope, Iowa State’s volleyball squad faces eight Big 12 opponents during October, and Iowa State wrestling kicks off in early November.

If that list of sports mixed with postseasons, openers and hearts of multiple regular seasons isn’t enough for you, I don’t know what to tell you.

While October is head and shoulders above any other month in terms of sports action, there’s an argument to be made for the other months’ placements.

1. October

2. December

My football bias is appearing here, but I just absolutely love bowl season, and even though an Iowa fan will tell you December bowls mean less, a bulk of the bowls are toward the end of the month, and it’s great.

December gets a bonus for the NBA, and the frigid weather, making it more enjoyable to not leave your couch for long periods of time.

3. March

Similar to bowl season, March Madness really gives the month a boost. Outside of college hoops, NBA action approaches the backend of the season, and NFL free agency opens up as well. MLB opening day started in March this year, too, even though it seems like an April event.

4. February

Generally, this one would be lower for me because the top event — the Super Bowl — can be mediocre some years and normally the Patriots win it anyway, but the NBA assists the second month of the year.

The NBA’s gone off the rails recently with the off-court storylines, and February highlights this with the trade deadline. The Daytona 500 is a plus to the month, too.

5. September

Maybe a little high for most, but September is a nice sports month because it gets us back in the football groove. There’s no better feeling than that optimistic feeling you have for whatever team you root for.

Plus, we get the Cy-Hawk game every ye— oh wait, let’s hold off on that point for now.

Baseball also starts to hit its stride in September as the marathon regular season dwindles.

6. January

January provides a nice mix of sports for viewers. Bowl games and the College Football Playoff games wrap up, and the NFL playoffs heat up. Plus, we get snow mixed into some of the football games this time of year.

The NBA also transitions from early season games to more important games as quality teams emerge.

7. November

Meaningful football games take place in November, but more importantly, professional and college hoops return.

8. June

The NBA grabs the spotlight, as the NBA Finals take place, along with the NBA Draft.

9. April

The NFL Draft (the best draft, hands down) takes place, and baseball truly begins.

10. May

The freshness of baseball season has worn off by this point, but the NBA reaches a fun point with the playoffs in full swing.

11. August

A lackluster month with pretty much just preseason football and regular season baseball to catch on TV.

12. July

An awful, terrible month for sports. No football, no basketball and the dog days of baseball season makes July the worst.