When I lived in the western time zone it was awesome for football. Saturday's, College Game Day was on by 7am and the first games were on by 9:00 (Bloody Mary, anyone?). 14 or 15 hours of non-stop games. And then Sunday's had the Steelers at 10:00. Game finished by 1:00 and you still had your whole day ahead of you to do whatever. It was a great schedule.
I lived a few years in the Mountain time zone. The 2 hours earlier for games was great. As you said, you had your whole day to do stuff.