March Madness is upon us. Well, already upon us and in more than just full swing. We’ve seen the number one OVERALL seed, Kansas, taken out by a team from the Missouri Valley Conference, Northern Iowa. Need I run that by again? NORTHERN IOWA defeated KANSAS, the number one team IN THE COUNTRY. So, BRACKET BUSTER ALERT! To those who do the tournament challenge and fill out brackets year after year and suffer through agony and pain, I’m sorry for I do feel your pain. My bracket had Kansas winning it all against Kentucky. But that just won’t happen now will it? A team consisted of two possible All Americans, Sherron Collins and Cole Aldrich, lost to a team with not one player who can even be a thought in those who consider the All American team. Then again, it is a form of madness for a reason.
Not only was Kansas a bracket buster, but in comes Ohio, a team who wasn’t even the number one seed in their respective conference and only got into the tournament because they won the MAC conference tournament. They played a highly touted Georgetown team with former number one overall recruit Greg Munroe, a 6′ 10″ PF who dominated the paint, scoring and rebound wise. Who cares about top recruits? Apparently, Ohio does not. What Ohio had was a lot of determination and heart and as a result, Ohio beats Georgetown in the first round, 97-83. It wasn’t even a close game! BRACKET BUSTER! According to CBSSports.com, 98.5 % of their users predicted that Georgetown would win. 1.5% of CBSSports.com users apparently knew what was really going to happen. Thankfully, I was part of the 98.5%. Beautiful.Yet again, it is a form of madness for a reason.
And the misery just doesn’t like one or two teams. Oh no it doesn’t. In my case, seems as though misery came in with about ten teams. Villanova, Pittsburgh, Vanderbilt, and Marquette are just a four of the ten teams not present in the real day tournament but seem to be playing in my bracket. And I will mention again, BRACKET BUSTER! Villanova and Marquette hurt most since they were going to make it to the elite eight. Other teams like Notre Dame and Temple I should have seen happening. The one that hurt most was Kansas, as stated earlier. They were to be my champions. Oh delightful.
And now the tournament is clearing up. 16 teams are now separating themselves from the pack. We’ve got the ‘who are they?’ in Cornell, Northern Iowa, and St. Mary’s. We’ve got the favorites in Duke, Kentucky, and Syracuse. All of these teams are looking towards the title of ‘Best Men’s College Basketball Team’ to bring home to their respective schools. Each team has been practicing day in and day out for a shot at the title, beating conference foes and non-conference powerhouses. They’ve been looking over tapes of each game and figuring out what could they strategically do in order to beat them. It is quite the journey and quite the stressful path.
Then again, there is a reason why this tournament is so enticing and mind blowing. There is a reason why Cinderella stories are used on a frequent metaphorical basis. Its the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, or as most of us sports fans refer it to, March Madness.