Full Court Press

I generally don’t give a crap about NCAA Division I men’s basketball until March, and then I act like I’ve been a fan all along. I don’t know what it is about the NCAA tournament – maybe it’s that it disrupts my “reality TV with a side of reality TV” weeknight viewing schedule, or maybe it’s that I tend to start caring arbitrarily about certain sports teams right around championship time (see: Chicago Cubs, October 2003), but in the last few years, I’ve started filling out the brackets for the men’s tournament.

But since I really don’t follow men’s college basketball during the rest of the year, I have developed a complex system – almost my own little bizarre alchemy – for filling out my brackets. Then I stick the sheet up on my office bulletin board like I’m a legit fan and not a geeky chick who likes filling out forms. Seriously, y’all, I’m such a dork that I don’t actually know if it’s “bracket” (singular) or “brackets” (plural), but I stuck with “brackets” just to be consistent. Even if I’m wrong.

Anyway, here’s how I pick a champion, in priority order.

  1. Is one of the teams Northwestern? If so, then I double-check to make sure I actually have a current NCAA Division I Men’s bracket in front of me, and not some space transmission from an alternate reality. Oh, and Northwestern wins.
  2. Is one of the teams Duke? If so, then Duke wins everything, because of JJ Redick.
  3. Is one of the teams UConn? If so, then UConn probably wins although maybe not, because sometimes I get mad at UConn for no logical reason. Also, if UConn plays Duke, Duke wins.
  4. Is one of the teams in the Big Ten? If so, then that team usually wins (Ohio State, Michigan State), although certain teams only win grudgingly (Wisconsin, Illinois).
  5. Do I know anyone who attends/attended, or is/was employed by the school? If so, then that school wins at least one game (Winthrop, Cal).
  6. ACC teams sometimes win unless I arbitrarily hate them that day (Carolina).
  7. Teams with really long names usually don’t win because I can’t fit them all on the line and don’t like abbreviating (UNC Wilmington).
  8. Teams with weird names (Oral Roberts) lose unless it’s a fun weird name (Gonzaga).
  9. Teams with colors/uniforms I like (Tennessee) beat teams with colors/uniforms I dislike or don’t know (Wichita State). Same with mascots.
  10. Oh, and the whole record/ranking/seed thing factors in a bit too, although sometimes only as an inconsistent tiebreaker (sometimes I pick the favorite, sometimes the underdog).

So that’s how I ended up with Duke, UCLA, UConn, and Ohio State in my Final Four.

8 Replies to “Full Court Press”

  1. if the word “Oral” is not fun to you, you dated the WRONG people.

    also, if you would like to play in the pool that i play in annually, let me know. this is the one where i picked 3 of 4 teams last year and finished 6th, just show of money.

    if GD louisville had even MADE the finals, i’da had $450.

    stupid rick craptino.

  2. Lorie, I have UCLA and Duke, with Duke winning. And thanks for picking Cal to win a game!

    Cal just hired your football team’s offensive coordinator to do the same thing for us that he did for you the last few years. Sorry to steal a good one…

  3. Too bad you can’t get into the women’s NCAA one, since JMU didn’t get a bid… but you could be all over the WNIT, which they did get…. http://www.womensnit.com/

    And if I didn’t totally ruin my chances to go, by not being able to go to the CAA tournament and because my knees totally hate me, you could maybe be able to watch me play in the pep band on TV this friday… but I don’t know yet

  4. Hey, no one quarreled with NU’s offense… we’re keeping our own defensive coordinator, thanks.

    Here’s hoping UVA knocks Stanford out of the men’s NIT tonight.

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