It is once again time for the NCAA "March Madness" basketball tournament. The eventual champions will get to bask in the national spotlight until the next cruise-ship disaster/shark attack/episode of "Girls"/baseball season/ happens. And sure, winning a basketball title is worth bragging about; but we all know the real champion is the institution of higher education that can charge the most tuition and still have enough students to keep its rejection letter printer warm. It's The Awl's annual NCAA bracket by tuition, using the college information resource Peterson's.* (Where available, in-state tuition was used.)
After four bustling days of NCAA tournament action, a few truths have become clear: the Big East Conference was every bit as overrated as it looked before the tournament began; the era wherein referees’ decisions were considered sacrosanct is over; and Virginia is for basketball lovers.
Of the preposterous ten Big East teams that we were told deserved at large bids to the tournament (University of Connecticut earned the automatic bid), only one remains in the field. And the two Big East teams left, UCONN and Marquette, each played and defeated Big East teams in the Round of 32, meaning that, in theory, had [...]
You didn't realize basketball and March Madness were things that were still happening? Well, they in fact are, as is our ongoing Tournament Bracket Challenge Thing. Here's the strange place in which we find ourselves.
That's right hoops (that's slang for basketball) fans, it's March and it's about time we go mad for it! At the suggestion of one of our loyal readers, I have created a group on ESPN and have forced both Choire and Alex to fill out a bracket, much to their chagrin (and, in Choire's case, total bafflement, followed by blind guessing), and now it's your turn-to fill out a bracket. But wait, we're not just playing for pride and bragging rights here.
Last night, the UConn Huskies—which, by the way, have you ever taken a close look at their logo? the dog looks SO happy—won the men's college basketball national championship with a win over Butler. You have probably already read, you intrepid sports fan you, that the title game was one of the worst ever, and if you watched it, you probably thought to yourself, "Wow, those look like taller versions of my friends and I playing basketball." (That's what I thought to myself.) But what probably hasn't been articulated enough is how insufferable fans of UConn are.
Let’s start with this sobering but necessary caveat: Barack Obama is perfectly capable of applying his attention on the country’s economic problems and the world’s massively scary issues right now and taking 20 minutes to fill out an NCAA bracket.
With that out of the way, let’s parse Obama’s bracket—published earlier today on ESPN.com—with all of the attention of a 24/7 political pundit parsing the latest daily message from the White House. Forget Politico’s “Win the morning.” Let’s “Win the March Madness.”
What a weekend! Universal health care reform! Extremely nice weather in New York! And the fall of Pete's Jayhawks from the top of the Official Awl Tournament Bracket Competition! These three things are all of equal value and importance! In case you were outside all weekend and not paying attention to basketball, here's what you missed.
The only bracket that matters: the Greatest Living American Abstract Painter Tourney. It starts easy-for instance, Louise Fishman pounds Ross Bleckner-then gets hard. And then weird: the top four seeds are… Ellsworth Kelly, Cy Twombly, Robert Ryman and Mark Bradford? Mark Bradford is about 1/3 the age of those other three. Weirdsies! Also, you know, it's not even likely that all of these painters will be alive by the end of this tournament!
The Awl Bracket Contest Update: The One Where Readers Find Out That The Tournament Is Still Going On!
Believe it or not, the NCAA college basketball tournament is still going on! In fact, it's a very exciting tournament that is currently taking place! Upsets (teams that are seeded lower and less favored to win, are defeating teams that are higher seeded and more favored to win!) are happening left and right! Here's how crazy it is: Of the almost 6 million brackets filled out on ESPN, only TWO of them correctly predicted the Final Four (the four teams that make it to the semifinals) correctly. That is a very low percentage! I'm not sure if you'll believe this, but none of the intrepid Awl sports fans were [...]
That's right, folks, it's that time again! The ides of March are upon us, and it's TIME TO GO MAD! Don't have any idea what I'm talking about? Well, that makes sense as I've currently not given you much, if any, context with which to understand what I'm saying. Wait, but you know what, readers of The Awl are so sports savvy*, I'm sure you guys caught my "mad March" reference up there as an allusion to our (now) annual tradition: The Official 2011 Awl March Madness Bracket Tournament Challenge Sponsored By The Awl!
Wow, what a way to kick off March Madness, am I right? Of the first 16 games, 8 (that's half) were decided in either OT (overtime) or by 3 points or less. That means things were exceptionally close! For comparison, only nine games TOTAL last year were decided by the same criteria. You know what else is close? The rankings in the ongoing Official Awl March Madness Bracket Tournament Challenge!
NCAA basketball "March Madness" is on-beginning today, a host of institutions of higher education compete for bragging rights and an incremental boost in income from licensed-merchandise sales. But Awl readers know that the real champion school is the one that can charge the most tuition a year and still attract a robust student body to rock the all-important school rankings. Using the figures provided by college information resource Peterson's, I ran the NCAA tournament bracket by tuition. (In the case of state university system schools, the lower, in-state tuition is used.) It was a barnburner.