Another year of March Madness is upon us. Some sports experts call it the most exciting post-season in all of sports, and for good reason. The one thing you can guarantee about this three-week-long tournament is that there are absolutely no guarantees. Throw the rulebook out the door, throw all the rankings out the door, and get ready for a whirlwind of upsets and excitement that is unparalleled to any other sporting experience. Those who aren’t familiar with the event may still be wondering—what is March Madness?
March Madness is the NCAA’s (National Collegiate Athletic Association’s) end-of-season playoff where 64 teams (68 sometimes with early playoff rounds) compete in a bracketed tournament. What makes this unique for typical basketball playoffs is that it is single game elimination, meaning one loss and you pack up your bags and head to spring break.
“That team may be the best team that ever played college basketball.” – Bob Knight #MarchMadnesshttps://t.co/BaEVQjHt1q
— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) March 14, 2016Advertisement
The top teams have the advantages as far as seeding. The number one team in each bracket plays the lowest seeded number 16 team. However, although this may sound like an easy way to the finals for top teams, there has never been a time when all four number one seeds have advanced to the final four.
This year’s top teams are Kansas, Virginia, Oregon, and North Carolina. Last year’s March Madness champions were the Duke Blue Devils, who come into this year’s tournament as the fourth seed in the west bracket.
— NCAA March Madness (@marchmadness) March 14, 2016
To predict a winner for this year’s tournament, you might as well toss all these schools in a hat and draw them out one by one—you’ll probably have the same odds. Picking a champion is always tough, even with knowing that teams like Kansas are the favorite. But that doesn’t stop anyone from trying. Everyone from office workers to groups of friends, and, of course, the experts all create their own brackets. Even President Obama has consistently come up with his own March Madness bracket.
The fun kicks off this Thursday, March 17 with the first round of play. Get ready for a full weekend of #MarchMadness streaming all over your social media!