Archive for April, 2013

Center of the Basketball Universe

Center of the Basketball Universe (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I would like to think I have a certain amount of basketball expertise that most others do not possess. I pride myself on it actually. I don’t always know what I’m talking about regarding most things but when it comes to discussing college basketball, I’m about as knowledgeable as it gets. But when it comes to March Madness, every opinion I’ve formed, every observation I’ve made and everything I’ve come to know over the previous few months, means nothing; this year especially.

My friends had been debating with me about different teams and different match-ups the day after the brackets came out and listening to some of the things they were saying actually comforted me because it really showed how young and naive they were. I thought I was a lock to win my pool or at least be in the top 5 or 10 out of 45. So I started talking some trash to try to get my friends going a little bit. Actually now that I think about it, I was talking a lot of trash. I’m a bit of a trash talker on and off the court to be completely honest.

So, now it’s a couple of weeks later, and I’m looking at the bracket I printed out originally that I had been marking for my correct and incorrect picks. A circle signified a correct pick, while a slash marked an incorrect one. That paper is not a bracket any more, it’s become a poster for a slasher movie. I have slipped to near last place in my pool. Last year, I had Wichita State going to the Final Four because I knew they had what they needed but they couldn’t get it done for me. Now this year, after they lost the seniors who I thought would take them deep last year, they decide they want to upset everybody and ruin my bracket. Then after some convincing from ESPN, I reluctantly chose Georgetown to make it into my Final Four but nope, Florida Gulf Coast had other plans. And then, finally, the team I had going all the way, and in dominant fashion, was Indiana. I was so confident in this pick. I felt like the Hoosiers not only put the most talent on the floor, but also had the role players and the bench to go with it. But that Syracuse zone wore on them. It was bittersweet for me being that I am a Syracuse fan but I could feel the money – and a little bit of my pride – just slipping away as the clock ticked down to zero at the end of that game.

This year was undoubtedly one of the most ridiculous seasons of college basketball I have ever had the pleasure of watching. My bracket has never been so inaccurate and ugly. And now I have to endure the jokes and trash talk from those “young and naïve” kids who are, in fact, the top 5 in the pool. My own sister, who is old and naïve, is doing better than I am, and she just picked the teams who had the “prettiest colors.” It is madness, but I would expect nothing less from my favorite event of the year.