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Let the Madness Begin!
Wendy Yu
March 13, 2002

This weekend begins the best three weekends in sports. You heard it here first. March Madness, as the NCAA Basketball Tournament has been dubbed, is the greatest championship tournament in all of sports. It’s better than the World Series, better than NBA and NHL playoffs, and yes, better than the Superbowl. And let me tell you why.
  1. Great Cinderella stories: Gonzaga in the past (although this year they got robbed with a #6 seed), Princeton (upset over defending champs, UCLA, in 1996), BC with Curly, Coppin State and Hampton.
  2. First weekend coverage: if you’re lucky enough to be at home or in front of a TV somewhere, the picture in picture or split screen coverage of all the games can keep you mesmerized for hours. It’s ALL college basketball, ALL the time.
  3. College players do not get paid, so they are playing for their school pride and as well as trying to increase their value for the NBA draft. Many players come out of obscurity during the tournament and get drafted in the 1st round. Wally Szczerbiak from Miami of Ohio is the classic example. These guys play their hearts out and it is amazing to watch.
  4. Unbelievable finishes: each year there are several game winning or game tying shots that take your breath away. NBA pros never make shots like these – the half court shot, the catch and shoot three pointer with under a second left, and many more.
  5. Office pools: we all waste so much money and time entering our brackets into multiple pools, using our extensive knowledge about the players and the traditions. Meanwhile it’s always that guy who fills it the bracket in two minutes and has no idea what is going on that wins. Just fyi, I picked Maryland over Duke in the final – lame, yes I know, I was risk averse this year. No upset specials for me.

These are just a few reasons why March Madness is a phenomenon onto itself. This year is no different. Who can beat Duke? Will it be a classic Duke-Maryland final, like everyone thinks? Or will Kansas prove that it deserves to be the #1 ranked team in the nation? The potential Gonzaga-Arizona match-up in the second round could be a Final Four in any other year. Are the ‘Zags for real? How far can Bobby Knight take Texas Tech in his first year? Is Cincinnati for real? Who will make a name for themselves in the tournament? Can the stars carry their teams? Will some no name player from a small school make his school proud on national television? Will Dick Vitale finally burst a blood vessel in his head? Who will this year’s Cinderella be?

Let the madness begin at noon. - Copyright 2002 - Email us at
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