It’s finally here.
I’m one of those people who will tell you that March Madness, from Championship Week to ‘One Shining Moment’, is the greatest time of the year. It combines the water cooler event status of the Super Bowl, with the edge-of-your-seat intensity of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, all the while managing to crown a true champion (further embarrassing the BCS). It is the tournament that gives us ‘glass slipper’ Cinderellas, ‘David vs. Goliath’ and Gus Johnson unchained. It’s the only way most of America will remember Northern Iowa or IUPUI, and turns 19 year-olds into immortals forever.
It’s also the time of year that billions are lost in productivity, as America falls victim to the quest for a perfect bracket. I’m one of those people who year after year enters the office pool, studiously pours over the teams and match-ups only to lose to Janet from accounting who picked Duke because it was her dog’s name.
As much as we celebrate the uncertainty of the big dance, and as irrational as it was, it used to drive me crazy. How could I finish behind my buddy Rubin every time? Intellectualizing the situation offered no consolation, until finally I stopped trying. Read more…
Expect a fuller March Madness article this weekend, but for those of you who still need to fill out your brackets the gospel is above. Besides, it’s St. Patty’s Day take what you can get.
I am deeply concerned about Onuaku’s injury for Syracuse and admittedly went with my heart over my head a little with that one, but make no mistake if the Orange are anywhere close to 100% they are the best team in the country (not Kansas).
Mini-Rant: It’s the popular opinion that Kansas is the best team in the country this year… it’s just not true. Granted I won’t sound objective because I’m an alum and die-hard fan but let’s look at facts. Kansas and Syracuse played four common opponents (Memphis, Oakland, Cal and Cornell), three of whom made the tournament. Syracuse had the larger margin of victory in all four games, and in the case of Memphis and Cornell the differences were decisively in favor of the Orange.
Kansas gets credit for having the tougher non-conference schedule but that’s not Syracuse’s fault this year. They scheduled Cal who was ranked in the top 15 at the time, Memphis coming off of another 30-win season under Calipari and what turned into Kentucky’s recruiting class, and North Carolina coming off of a National Championship and a top 5 ranking (sorry Brandon). That’s in addition to Florida and Cornell who both made the tournament and they play in the Big East which is easily the deepest conference in the country, if not the best outright.
And should the two meet head-to-head as I (and many others) am predicting, while it holds no real bearing given how much both rosters have changed, Syracuse did beat Kansas last year in Kansas City. Bottom line, I’m going with Syracuse to win it all… deal with it.