The Excitement and Stupidity of March Madness
If you aren’t a fan of college basketball here in the U.S., stop reading and go about your business. But if you enjoy the game as much as I do, read on. I’ve been tempted to write this for several years, but always resisted the urge lest I offend and upset my friends. But I can refrain no longer. So here goes.
Deciding the national championship of college basketball based on a single elimination tournament is utterly idiotic, insane, ridiculous, and asinine. You heard me correctly. I’m talking about the utter stupdity of March Madness.
Don’t misunderstand me. I love March Madness! I love the tournament. It is exciting and mesmerizing and always a blast. But to use this tournament in which a single loss eliminates a team from an opportunity to win the national title is the height of stupidity. I watch the tournament every year. I faithfully and carefully fill out my bracket. I agonize when my favorite teams lose and rejoice when they win. But here’s why the tournament is dumb.
Imagine for just a moment that I had the power and authority to run the National Basketball Association, the professionals of the game. I announce that a change has been made in the post-season schedule. Every team in the NBA will now be entered into the post season and all will play for the championship based on a single elimination tournament. After a few rounds, in which the Lakers are defeated by Oklahoma City and Boston falls to Miami, the Thunder and Heat play one game for the championship, regardless of what happened during the regular season. Instead of the standard best three of five or best four of seven competition, one game decides it all.
You would rightly accuse me of having taken leave of my senses. “Sam, how can you base the professional championship of basketball on only one game? Don’t you realize that i