Don’t worry. Rarely does the person who knows the most about college basketball actually end up winning your bracket pool. I’m like 1 for 20 in my annual family NCAA contest, trailing the likes of my mother, wife, and random neighbor. And I do this shit for a living.
I’ll have plenty of time to wallow in defeat in April (or look for a new job?), so on with the brackets!
Whoever filled out this feel-good story of a bracket not only picked a No. 15 seed to win it all but, on the back, they also listed their favorite actors to play the role of the head coach when Mickey Mouse makes this Cinderella run into another inspirational underdog story (J.K. Simmons is a -250 favorite).
This bracket has also been known as the “I told you so” bracket, because one of those 25 upsets picked in the Round of 64 is going to come through and this little dreamer will be the first to point out that they were “all over it”.
As mentioned above, I’ve been thrashed in my annual bracket pool by females on the regular. Now, I will say my wife watches more college hoops than yours – a lot more – and my mom played college ball back in the day, so she knows her stuff.
However, for most bracket pools, the token girl bracket is one based on extreme circumstance, like who would win in a fight (a Bulldog or a Ute? What’s a Ute? I don’t know honey…), or a friend she knew in high school went on to school at Chattanooga. Or, the ultimate decider: team uniforms.
But while all those things sound trivial compared to analytics, RPI, and KenPom rankings, your sister’s bracket (which she filled out in five minutes) is going to kick the living crap out of the one you’ve been studying for since conference play started. Sheer madness.
Way to go out on a limb brother. Picking Kansas to win the title is one thing – half the country has that, duh – but penciling in KU, along with North Carolina, Michigan State (Oh, a No. 2! How daring), and Oregon in the Final Four has about as much risk as not brushing your teeth before bed.
But that’s not even the end of it. This rosin bag of a bracket treated double-digit seeds like Ebola patients and is the tournament pool equivalent to chugging a Costco-sized tub of Tums followed by one of those disgusting protein shakes your meathead friend drinks for every meal – yummmmm, chalky. On second thought, this bracket probably belongs to him. What an ass…
I’m from the school of one bracket to rule them all. It doesn’t matter if I’m in one pool or nine, it’s the same bracket – no matter what. But, there are plenty of people out there who could wallpaper their homes with the numerous variations of how the NCAA tournament will trickle out. And their “bracket” – notice that’s singular – is always changing depending on what goes down in March.
After the Round of 32, what you first saw the Wednesday before the Big Dance, which looked like an absolute mess painted in red ink, is now somehow a bracket loaded with live teams and only a handful of mistakes. And, you could have sworn his Elite Eight was different last week, but now features seven of the final schools left.
This bracket changes looks more than your girlfriend/wife when you’re running late for a dinner reservation, but without all the loaded questions and icy stares. It’s a surprise the Chameleon doesn’t have Utah in the championship game since this is basically bracket polygamy.
The Perfect bracket
Sometimes this is our bracket (before reality tramples it like a court-rushing student section). But more often than not, it’s the first bracket you see after handing yours in. It’s glorious, like spotting a 12-point buck in a quiet wooded area. You don’t want to move for fear of scaring it off.
This bracket is the precise blend of favorites and live underdogs with some risk/reward selections mixed in. It has all the makings of a beautiful bracket, which usually means you’re second-guessing every move you made before the tournament. It even has the always important 12-over-5 seed trend nailed down. Damn, this bracket is fine as a mutha…
Now the actual chances of a “perfect” bracket are 1 in 9,223,372,036,854,775,808. About the same chance Ben Simmons has of blowing off the pros for another year at LSU. Sorry Bayou Bengals.
Bonus bracket: My dad’s bracket
Every year my father fills out a bracket for the NCAA tournament. And every year he takes Gonzaga to win it all. It’s like playing the same set of lottery numbers every week.
Dad bounces between upset and favorite-heavy brackets from year to year, but the constant is that the Zags are inked in all the way to the national title game. He could start backwards at the championship and just fill in the Bulldogs in reverse. This year, I think I’ll just send him a ready-made bracket with Gonzaga already printed in to win the national title.
I thought last year was going to be Dad’s season. The Zags were a No. 2 seed in the South Regional – in my opinion the softest of the four – and had the blend of talent and experience to make it to the Final Four. But they got rolled by Duke in the Elite Eight.
This year, the Bulldogs are a No. 11 seed, taking on the Big East champion No. 3 Seton Hall in the opening round. But Gonzaga is a dangerous team in the Midwest side of the bracket, should it carry over momentum from its WCC championship. This is a program that has thrived in the underdog role.
Let’s just hope Dad sticks to his guns and rides Gonzaga again in 2016. There’s nothing more crushing than your lucky lotto numbers hitting the jackpot the week you forgot to buy a ticket.
What bracket is yours? Comment in the section below. And if you haven’t filled one out yet, download Covers’ printable NCAA tournament bracket.