So, are we all agreed then? That the split season is a mighty job?
That it did what was intended; gave the players their lives back, ensured a good bit of rest, took the power from the old brokers and gave it back to the clubs?
Well, maybe not for Derry.
You see, Glen are going well in the Ulster Club football series and Slaughtneil are looking as if they might capture another Ulster Club Hurling Championship this weekend.
If Glen beat Kilcoo, they won’t line up for the Ulster final until January 16.
If Slaughtneil do what is expected and beat Ballycran, their All-Ireland semi-final will be a week later.
Now, Glen have Conor Glass, Ciaran McFaul, Odhran Bradley, Ethan Doherty, Conlan Bradley and Jack Doherty. Slaughtneil have Karl and Chrissy McKaigue, Brendan Rogers, Shane McGuigan and Paul McNeill.
That’s 11 players from the Oak Leaf County panel. Estimates have it that the Derry panel would be down to 17 players. If this situation transpires, then Derry will not think long and hard about pulling out of the Dr McKenna Cup, they will withdraw through necessity.
Should either team go all the way to an All-Ireland final, their players could miss Derry’s opening round of the National League against Down on January 29.
Now, perhaps you are thinking at this point that withdrawing from the McKenna Cup is no big deal, teams have done it before and Queen’s in their latter years weren’t always fussed about the scheduling.
But this is the first test of the split season, and the notion of fitting everything into a calendar year has hit the fence.
So yeah, the split season. A mighty job. A good big break at the end of the season. Feet up, turf on. Mulled wine.
But all that is dependent on actually being able to play for your club in the Ulster Club.
Surely, I mean surely, it couldn’t be the case that somebody was forbidden in an amateur game from playing with their club? In one instance, it seems that one player had been persuaded to sit out their club’s game.
The split season. What a roaring success, giving clubs their place in the world!
And maybe Peter Harte feels the same. And Darragh Canavan, Ben McDonnell and Niall Kelly.
This weekend, they are in a league game for Errigal Ciaran against neighbours Carrickmore. Because of the way the league has fallen, nothing less than a win will do for Errigal, who would then win the entire league.
Yes, that game will take place on December 19. Christmas week. The good news for Harte, Canavan and the rest of them is that they might get a full 10 days off before pre-season begins. Plenty of time to knock a stone or two off for the Dr McKenna Cup.
The split season. Break out the mince pies.
Down in Kerry, they are still playing football. Last Sunday, Dr Crokes beat Spa in the East Kerry final. The North Kerry final is yet to be played, but they take a bit of a perverse pleasure in trying to fix that as close to Christmas Day as possible.
And that’s the way it has been forever and a day in Kerry, a county that is so mad for Gaelic football that they have no fewer than 11 — yes, 11 — divisions of football at minor level.
Maybe it’s still not right, though. Why is it that we are playing all these finals and showpiece occasions on days when the rain is falling in sheets and the floodlights are swaying like the man who takes his annual scatter of drink at the office Christmas party?
Is it right for the players? Can a game like hurling even be refereed properly under such conditions?
Here’s the reality. We haven’t created a split season. The idea of separating club and county has not been achieved when some players are forbidden from playing for their clubs when county teams are getting going with their pre-season regime with the Championship five whole months away.
All we have done is create a situation whereby our county footballers and hurlers, the ones who provide the most entertainment, are flogged constantly. That’s nothing to celebrate.
Referees. Can’t stand the sight of them for the most part, can’t live without them either.
There is a thesis out there to be written about the state of mind someone needs to be in, in order to take up refereeing. It is the most thankless of tasks.
A few weeks ago, there was laughing up the sleeves in some quarters when former Mayo forward Alan Dillon questioned the amount of abuse match day officials are subject to.
And then the weekend brought a slew of examples of why recently-retired players — or anyone, for that matter — wouldn’t want to take up the whistle.
It wasn’t just the treatment of Jerome Henry after he blew the final whistle to confirm Mountbellow-Moylough’s defeat to Roscommon’s Pearses, with players angrily surrounding him and an escort required to get him off the pitch.
It also involves the kind of fall-out that greeted Johnny Murphy when he sent off two Loughmore Castleiney players in their defeat to Ballygunner, with any amount of heavy-duty abuse sent in his direction on social media.
In Tyrone, PRO Eugene McConnell brought it to attention in his annual report, noting: “In the next three years, if we don’t collectively work towards ensuring a steady supply of new recruits, we will have a serious problem in the numbers of experienced officials available to take charge of our games.”
McConnell has walked that particular walk as a referee of long-standing.
The lack of referees can be attributed to other factors. Nowadays, there is a trend towards players retiring from playing the games and wanting to test themselves in endurance sports such as running and cycling. The lure of completing a Triathlon or an Ironman event wasn’t so prevalent in the past.
And then there is not only the abuse you are likely to get in person, but across the internet.
To achieve something in this field might not seem an attractive ‘legacy’ to leave behind, but it is desperately needed.