Road to March Madness: the scenic route
Miko Malabute | Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Look around. Take a whiff of the sweet, sweet aroma in the air this beautiful time of the year. What special occasion does today mark? Yes, you’re indeed right: it’s time for March Madness! (I suppose today is also St. Patrick’s Day — who knew?) With Selection Sunday coming and going and the selection committee dictating who gets to go to the Big Dance, it’s time to fulfill your patriotic duty of completing a bracket and I am personally walking you through some of the of the highlighted matchups you should consider when you’re completing yours. What’s that? You’re afraid a sports article has found its way into the “Scene” section? Fear not! For that’s the beauty of March Madness — there’s absolutely no logic to any of this! It’s madness I tell you, (March) Madness!
Going through the region, it’s pretty much a must in your bracket to have Kentucky advance through pretty much everything, and you will want to have Purdue match up with them in the next round. This is because I’m pretty sure there’s a “cat mascot” limit in the tournament — wildcats are enough (Kentucky, Arizona, Villanova), but throwing bearcats into the mix? That’s just asking for trouble. Between the first round coinciding with St. Patrick’s Day and Notre Dame approaching basketball destiny, we’re pretty much a lock to advance past Northeastern. Indiana’s iconic jerseys (have you seen “Hoosiers”?) are good for at least one win, so you can count on them to advance in the short-term.
Wisconsin’s premiere player — Frank “The Tank” Kaminsky — has a nickname that just rolls through the competition: look for them to go far. In one of the bigger toss-ups from an actual sports standpoint, Oregon versus Oklahoma State can be a nerve-wracking pick — until you think to come back to the jerseys. Look for Oregon to sport some flashy neon green jerseys: looks that are so sharp they’re dressed to kill. The same type of logic can apply for Baylor to beat out Georgia State: don’t mess with Texas or their flashy threads.
The Eastern region is chockfull of heavyweight mascots here, and so really this might be the region that can potentially bust your bracket. At this point, any and all wildcats just have to advance — after all, cats travel in packs, right? Look for the UC Irvine Anteaters to “Zot, Zot, Zot!” their way past the Louisville Cardinals (yes, apparently anteaters go “zot.”) When you’re flying high, you’re flying high, and really, who can fly higher than a Flyer? Make sure to have Dayton on your radar. The only thing more iconic than Michigan State’s Sparty is their head coach, Tom Izzo. Quick: what’s Georgia’s mascot? Who’s their coach? Exactly.
Duke. Yes. They’ll advance (though they might be pinched if they’re caught without any green today). St. John’s will advance over San Diego State — “San Diego,” which, of course, in German means “first round exit.” Now usually when you completing a bracket, it is customary to pick a team you have absolutely no knowledge of, but will pick anyway because their school name just sounds like an upset pick. That, naturally, is referring to Stephen F. Austin. Round out your bracket by having Iowa State go all the way because who dares mess with a cyclone, and you’re well on your way to having a bracket as good as anyone else’s.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.