Monday, April 4, 2016

"B" is for Basketball

Or maybe it’s “M” is for March Madness. Either way, the Big Dance is an event of rather epic proportions in our house.  Of which I have written before.  Despite my genetic predisposition to football, I do believe that my marital affiliation with college hoops now reigns supreme.  From where I sit--and that’s in our chair-and-a-half, comfortably watching the Tournament courtesy of CBS’s the most spectacular, topsy-turvy, unpredictable time of the sporting year.  And, that’s what makes it so much fun!

And, yes, we indulged in our study on “Bracketology”again this year.  Our mascot bracket had the MSU Spartans as the 2016 champs, beating the Trojans in the Final.  Our aim was to do some statistical analyses of the early games...but, then MTSU beat MSU.  Hawaii embarrassed California.  Yale shocked Baylor.  What the bless?!  You heard that sound across America. It was the sound of brackets exploding, blown to proverbial smithereens.  And, then, because the brackets we once thought were as solid as cement were now just like so much confetti after an especially festive party, we just settled in to enjoy the show.  

He Who Is Now Taller Than I offers a few thoughts:

 1.  “Giddy” can be a name.  (See “Potts, Giddy).

 2.  The ACC is the best basketball conference (See “6 ACC teams in the Sweet 16”).

 3.  It is possible to blow a 12-point lead in one minute (See “Texas A&M versus Northern Iowa).

4.  There have been more buzzer beaters this year than last year:  Northern Iowa vs. Texas, Iowa vs. Temple, Providence vs. USC, Notre Dame vs. Stephen F. Austin, and Wisconsin vs. Xavier.

A quick look at the Dance Map indicates that Texas, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and California are the hoop states.  Oh, and of course, Indiana.  Thirty-one states were represented in original sixty-four team selections.  And, now it's down to the Carolina TarHeels and the Villanova Wildcats.  Good stuff.

The buzzer beaters are hard, hard, hard.  Not only for one's bracket but just watching the crestfallen faces of the players who 5.2 seconds before could taste the next round.  And, there's the jubilant celebration as the half-court lob finds its way into the net.  The crowd goes wild. Seriously.  The bench clears.  Dogpiles are had.  Sweaty college boys hug, cry (yes, they cry), and chest bump to their heart's content.  Sometimes, the strong survive.  Or Cinderella gets the slipper.  March Madness at its finest.  

At the risk of getting all...well, me, about this magnificent month, the Bracketology tradition in our house is a great one.  We have spent hours watching games, plotting our brackets (futile though it may be), debating the Mascot Bracket (there are meteorological, biological, and historical "discussions" had around the Kitchen Table), and savoring the come-from-behind moments.  Eating Garlic-Parmesan wings and dipping carrots in ranch dressing. Good times.  Memories.  Nifty.  

And, just in case you were wondering, I will be wearing a particular color of t-shirt tonight.  A blue shirt.  A very particular shade of blue.