Why We Love March Madness

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I don’t always watch college basketball, but when I do, it’s in March.

March is one of the most entertaining times of the sports year, and that’s because of March Madness. The name says it all. There’s so much insanity in this college basketball tournament. There are many reasons to love March Madness and I’m going to give you my top five reasons why I love it.

5. The Pace

My favorite round of the madness is the first round. Think about, 32 games in two days. There are so many upsets and surprises in those two days that it’s hard to keep track of everything that’s happening.

Obviously the games get more meaningful as the tournament goes on. The one-seeds and two-seeds begin to make their way to the Sweet 16 and the Elite Eight, but not before we watch the upsets begin.

4. Cinderellas

Who can forget teams like George Mason, Davidson, Butler and recently VCU? Before March, most people have never heard of these schools, but they capture our hearts by upsetting every big name school.

Cinderella teams are the easiest teams to root for. If you don’t have a rooting interest or your team is already knocked out, most likely you’ll end up rooting for the underdog. It’s just human nature.

Nearly everyone jumped on the VCU bandwagon last year. They were an 11-seed that made it to the Final Four. How can you not root for that?

3. Every Game is Meaningful

Lose and you’re done. This type of format gives any team the chance to win against any other team. In the NBA, all a team has to do is win the best-of series. This often leads to the best team winning and advancing.

In this tournament, if you aren’t playing your best then you don’t get a second chance. A team has to win (at least) six games in order to become national champions, and they have to play their best basketball in all six games.

2. Brackets

Everyone fills out a bracket. That’s not even an exaggeration – literally every single human being fills out a March Madness bracket.

Filling out a bracket brings relevance to irrelevant games. It’s a lot like fantasy football. Not many people cared about the Colts playing the Jaguars last season, but if you had Reggie Wayne and Maurice Jones-Drew then it made the game interesting.

The same situation works with brackets. We don’t really care about Montana or Belmont, but if we picked them to win in an upset we find ourselves rooting for them. The only downside to brackets is when someone in your bracket pool is winning because they picked the teams to win based on uniform color.

1. The Passion

The best thing about March Madness, in my opinion, is the passion. Passion from the players, coaches, announcers and everyone involved. For some players, this is their last time playing basketball. They won’t make it in the NBA and this is their last time to give it all they’ve got.

Young adults put it all on the line in order to get their team to victory. Seniors are watching their four years of hard work finally pay off. Coaches are watching the players they intensely recruited give it their all. Nothing else in sports can match it.

Sophomore > Sports Journalism > IUPUI

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