Reed My Lips: Utter Madness

March is a big time of year for every college basketball fan. Not only does it follow a dense season of intense regular season play, it leads into the ever famous tournament known as March Madness.
This 64 team tournament lasts about a month and always brings upon surprises, upsets, and heartbreakers. In past years, there is usually a handful of upsets from 10, 9, and 8 seeds, maybe even a 13 seed, but this year has been more unpredictable than before.
Most people interested in the contests fill out a bracket projecting who will what game and which teams will end up where. People often enter “bracket pools” making bets for how the tournament will play out.
Warren Buffett, national billionaire, offered up the opportunity of a lifetime to anybody who decided to take part in the bracket predictions: Buffett would pay 1 billion dollars to anyone with a perfect bracket, or he would buy out anybody for 100 million dollars who had everything up to the final four correct. The tournament started on Thursday, March 20, and by the end of the first round of tournament play on Saturday, March 22, there were no perfect brackets left. Because there were no perfect brackets left, nobody was eligible to receive the 100 million or one billion dollars.
The way this tournament has gone so far, most people’s brackets have been destroyed. There have been games that almost nobody could’ve predicted. Ridiculous upsets include 14 seed Mercer Bears, defeating the ever powerful 3 seed Duke Blue Devils, 11 seed Dayton Flyers defeating the 6 seed Ohio State Buckeyes then going on to beat the 3 seed Syracuse Orange, who are a dominant team each year.
Due to such insane upsets, people have been disappointed and nihilistic about the rest of the tournament. Usually, at this point, a small handful of people have minimal or no mistakes made in their brackets, which is always an astounding feat to follow.
With upsets such as Dayton’s, Mercer’s, Harvard’s (over 5 seed Cincinnati), and others, this year’s March madness has been exciting, needless to say.  I am not very into watching basketball but this year’s excitement has left me on the edge of my seat during most games.
Personally, my bracket has been destroyed. Four of my predicted teams for the “Elite Eight” have already been knocked out. Because of my own mistakes in my bracket picks, I have lost interest in the tournament, simply due to the fact that I have a very small chance of winning my pool. Because I have no chance to win money, my attention span is automatically shortened. I can imagine that this is also the case for the majority of people participating in bracket pools this year.
Alas, the rest of this tournament will surely be one to watch. If there is one year to pay attention to potential Cinderella stories, it’s this year. Be sure to watch the championship game on April 7.

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