Ok, full disclosure, I don’t watch much college basketball. I have a hard time mustering any attention to it pre-mid March, you know? I think it’s decent basketball, but the tournament is so compelling because it’s so frantic and so often really, really close. Otherwise, they’re taking a lot of ill-advised shots. Or as I like to say during pick-up, “Put a tent over that circus!”
You would think such ignorance would liberate me in making my picks, but alas, it has not been so. Instead I recall every prejudice I’ve ever had about any college basketball program ever and apply it to this year’s tourney despite its obvious insignficance.
“Duke, not with that pasty Danny Ferry!”
“Michigan with those long shorts!”
“Notre Dame? Oh, the pope would like that now wouldn’t he?”
Instead of polishing up my bracket in 10 minutes, I’d spend 3 to 5 work hours reading
Brackets even I can understand. I take the one on the far right.
synopses of all the teams and constructing a wonderful fantasy land in which 3 lines of text improve my
chances of success in some statistically significant way.
But the last few years I got smart and constructed a more “effective” strategy. I decided to always pick a team that is “unpopular” (i.e. not very good) with the expectation that if they win it, I’m guaranteed to be in the money, despite getting 4 to 8 correct picks in the first round.
Brilliant, right? I could have taken the “smart” pick, Ohio State. But I live IN Ohio. You know how many Nuts there are around here? Bunch-a-million (as my friend once replied when pondering how many records the Beatles had sold). Picking them would have required me to actually know something other than that Ohio State was good. Duke? Don’t they win like every year? These choices are far too obvious! One must think outside the tiny 3/4s boxes.
And man, am I looking like a genius right now. There are upsets all OVER the place. Butler’s making another unlikely run. AND something called “VICU” (do you spell the letters or try to say it as a word?? I mean, who are those guys?) is also in the Great 8. This looks like the perfect year to have applied my airtight strategy and come out like a bandit. Seriously, that Pitt pick is looking so sweet right about now.