Sports fans roared or gasped in shocked. Players thrust theirs arms in the air to celebrate victory. People always love a good Cinderella story, and this year’s NCAA March Madness has provided that in multiple games early on in the tourney. Some examples? Florida Gulf Coast University over San Diego State and Georgetown. Wichita State over Gonzaga. Cal over UNLV. You get the picture.
These underdogs have gone through a rags-to-riches run, and some of the teams have proven their worth dominating over successful basketball teams in just the first round. Sure, the fan favorites have proven their worth time and time, to earn their title as the possible winners. And of course, the media magnifies the publicity around it, even so much that the players get a little upper hand and shot to get drafted in the NBA.
However, it’s the underdogs such as Florida Gulf Coast University that has given the beautiful Cinderella story so far. While their opponents have been superior, but ultimately it’s the team’s chemistry, heart, and drive that allows them to claim the title as victors. And surely, fans keep wanting more to see little David beat mighty Goliath.
Today marks the beginning of the March Madness tourney – one the most exciting time in sports, for all those who follow. With brackets filled and locked in now, people bet on who they think is going to advance in every round and most importantly, win it all. There are many teams that stand out and ruled out as favorites, but this tournament can always be unpredictable, as ‘Cinderella Story’ teams tend to pull surprising upsets.
Who do you think is going to win it all? Tell us your thoughts.
After a predictable first round and an appropriately mad second and third, we have at last reached the Sweet Sixteen.
To start, here is a list of this week’s match ups:
1 Kentucky vs 4 Indiana
3 Baylor vs 10 Xavier
1 MSU vs 4 Louisville
3 Marquette vs 7 Florida
1 Syracuse vs 4 Wisconsin
6 Cincinnati vs 2 Ohio State University
1 UNC vs 13 Ohio
11 North Carolina State vs 2 Kansas
Sweet Sixteen Key Trends
- O-hi, Ohio! Where did you come from? With OSU, Ohio, Cincinnati and Xavier all in the Sweet 16, the state is naturally a front runner. From 2-seeds to 13-seed, we can only anticipate that all the Ohio-natives will cancel each other out.
- Big Ten: Who’s hoping for a Sweet Sixteen sweep by the B10? Indiana, Michigan State, Wisconsin and OSU all have a running shot for the Final Four, let alone the Elite Eight.
- Wisconsin had a serious opportunity to climb past 1-seed Syracuse. With best player Fab Melo out on academic probation, 4-seed Wisconsin may be able to prove their mobility.
- Indiana might have the toughest game against Kentucky, who have proved nothing but ruthless over the past week.
- Baylor: March Madness upset veterans. Always good for a pleasant surprise.
- There are 3 1:4 seed match-ups. Let’s just say it’s the triumph of the underrated. Or perhaps bracket allocation should be re-considered.
SO, as March Madness kicked off to smooth sailing on its first day, I know we are thankful for the NOTY awards on this holiday. For those who don’t know: the Name of the Year Ballot is distributed each year on the first day of March Madness. Bill Simmons references the ballot as the “Best March Madness time waster.” This means, next time you’re watching Wisconsin kill Montana, take a second to allocate your NOTY picks.
After Syracuse pulled through in the second half, I decided to tune out of MM for the rest of the day. Instead, I focused on this bracket and below are my top picks:
- Nohjay Nimpson
- Lolita Respectnothing
- Hannukkah Wallace
- Starzanne Stripes
- Pamela Balls Organista
It’s the most wonderful time of the year: March Madness 2012. That means brackets and basketball. With yesterday’s release of the 2012 NCAA Men’s Tourney bracket, and the first game on Thursday, there’s nothing to do but fill out a bracket and wait for the madness to ensue. (If Bracketology isn’t your favorite subject, then drop out of class now).
Now: a small disclaimer. My readers should know that as a Big Ten alum, I have no choice but to blog Big Ten-friendly. That’s not to say I won’t honestly comment on the progression of the tournament.
So, take a look at the Bracket, fill it out to your liking and let March Madness 2012 begin!
- First rounds begin March 13
- Second round: March 15-16
- Third: March 17-18
- Sweet 16: March 22-23
- Elite Eight: March 24-25
- Final Four: March 31
- Champion: April 2
- Michigan State