Written by in ArticlesMarch 27th, 2012

The Final Four: I Hate My Brackets

We’re almost there now: as the month of March comes to an end, so does the NCAA basketball season.

Although the usual buzzer-beaters didn’t happen this year, if you – along with the majority of the nation – had brackets with Duke over Lehigh, Mizzou beating Norfolk State, Michigan over Ohio, and Wichita State beating VCU…I’m so sorry, that’s why it’s called March Madness, and that’s why I regret creating brackets for the first time since my arrival to the U.S. from Hong Kong. I’m almost certain that I should be on a prescription of LIPITOR now due to these games.

I’m an active basketball player, having played for my high school team, and still playing in Georgetown University’s Yates Field House. I’ve watched enough NCAA games to be familiar with most of these teams, and I’ve always watched NBA games. I’d like to think that I have a pretty good grasp of the game of basketball. And yet, every single time March rolls around, I get mindfu**ed.

Even in my first two years, when I didn’t create brackets, the NCAA tournament was the ultimate heart-breaker. Georgetown was eliminated by the widely-unknown Ohio in the first round in my Freshman year. The following year, we were done over by (unbeknownst to us at the time) the Cinderella-story VCU.

So here I stand, having experienced two years of upsets, and I still have not learned my lesson. Ohio “upset” Michigan (a team that lived and died by the 3), and VCU took down Wichita State. I hate you Shaka Smart. Then we had two 15-seeds take down 2-seeds, and I ate my feelings.

Round of 64: gained 6 pounds. Somehow still in the 98th percentile.

Georgetown advances for the first time in…well, none of us care, because we are through!

Note: Lost to NC State. Hate CBS and NCAA refs. Tired of far too many charge calls. Breaking TV remote.

Round of 32 through Elite Eight: lost 12 pounds, haven’t moved from couch, seeing the faint outline of my abs for the first time since high school. Somehow still in the 96th percentile. Obama is in the 99th percentile, and LeBron is still terrible.

Note: Looking at ESPN’s featured brackets after the Round of 64, the worst bracket belongs to LeBron, and the best belongs to Obama. After going through most of the featured brackets, there is a correlation between education and accuracy of brackets here. Weird?

Final Four: regained a few pounds. 94th percentile. I would celebrate, but I’ve officially stopped caring. So. Hungry. TV remote still broken. Not being able to change the channel using a remote really sucks.

So here we are, the Final Four. We technically don’t have any Cinderella teams this year, and I feel empty. Kentucky, a 1-seed, versus Louisville, a 4-seed, and two 2-seeds in Kansas and Ohio State, respectively.

Kentucky looks loaded as usual, with a line-up that just straight bullies 99% of the rest of the nation (with Calipari spending X dollars every year to illegally recruit more ridiculous players…”allegedly”), and The Uni-brow has 10 more blocks than Anthony Davis himself. Louiseville grinds it out and looks like a different team every game, and Peyton Siva’s hairline still looks like it’s painted on (Pitino, I’ll admit that you’re a really good coach now). Kansas has Bill Self, Thomas Robinson is on ‘roids, Elijah Johnson has been clutch, and Tyshawn Taylor is finally recovering from his Space Jam slump (I can’t think of any other reason for his occasional terrible play during the regular season, and his magnificent play in the past few games). Finally, Ohio State (note: don’t call it “O State”…it sounds wrong to others. I’m new to the U.S., it’s not my fault.) has Thad Matta, Jared Sullinger is basically Carlos Boozer 2.0 and has officially raised his vert from 6 to 8 inches after losing 10 pounds, Aaron Craft tricks everyone by looking like the ball boy, and their wing players keep stepping up. Jokes aside, it’s great to see Thomas Robinson make it this far even with the tragedies in his life.

We have two teams from Kentucky, an hour drive away from one another, and teams from the Big Ten and Big 12. Big time teams going at it in the Big Easy. This is going to be a great Final Four – so here’s my final screwit. I’m done with brackets. Let’s just enjoy these games with beers and burgers.

Tangent: how fun would it be if the NBA converted their playoff system into a single-game elimination system and allowed for brackets to be created? Who would have the Heat getting upset by the Wizards? Wait…no one. The Wizards are terrible. Let’s go with  New York. How about the Suns (yeah, I’ve been a Suns fan for a while now. Don’t bother trying to give me a hard time for it, the owner has already screwed us all) against the Clippers? Assists-that-you-did-not-see-coming galore. You can’t try to convince me that this wouldn’t make every single game more intense. The storylines would be ridiculous! Imagine: LeBron failing again, and against the Jeremy Lin-led Knicks (and Carmelo finally doing something in the playoffs), with SportsCenter having this headline repeated 800 times throughout the day. Or we could have LeBron’s beard versus Baron Davis/Tyson Chandler’s.

Finals prediction: Chicago Bulls and OKC Thunder. Or at least it’s what I want to see. Young, hungry, hard-working players with a pair of great, young coaches who know how to win and know how to coach (and there will be both offense AND defense – Spurs? Snore.).


Written ever so eloquently by NextGame Nation Member and intern, Morgan Chang.


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