Sources: 96-Team March Madness Is “Done Deal”
My bad, everyone. I honestly tried searching before I posted this, but I guess The Onion beat me to it.
4,096 teams really is the next logical step for ESPN and the NCAA, as it clearly won't bring down the level of play in the tourney. At that point, my IM basketball team will get at least a 900-seed.
Psh, the team from my geographic area is going to beat your IM team and you will be emasculated as a result.
I think you mean "You will suffer humiliation"...
Unfortunately, I don't get a vote.
We could instantly be a bubble team..
I can't WAIT until football becomes EXACTLY like basketball! When we get a playoff system, that's going to RULE.
I mean...yeah, a basketball season is basically a bloated piece of crap filled with meaningless exhibition games against teams made up community college students in wheelchairs...but conference play RULES! So what if out of a 16-18 game schedule, only about eight games matter? Those eight games ROCK!
Once (insert your team here) goes .500 in the conference by knocking off the worst teams in the (insert your conference here), we're TOTALLY going to the NCAA tournament!!
Won't that be great? 90 percent of the season will be a completely forgetable, anonymous mess. But once we get to March...whew! Watch out! We play 30 games so that we can get eliminated in the second week of a meaningless tournament.
I mean, yeah, it's not the NBA where you have 82 of those meaningless games so that 75 percent of the teams get into a crappy tournament...but we're working on it! It's ALMOST as good!
Can't WAIT for the greatest, most popular sport in the country to get completely watered down and destroyed.
That's going to be awesome!
I have this suspicion that you feel quite strongly about this subject
This could get heated.
I mean, yeah, it's not the NBA where you have 82 of those meaningless games so that 75 percent of the teams get into a crappy tournament...
Actually in the NBA, 53% of teams (16 of 30) make the playoffs. Personally, I thought the league was at its best in the 1980s, when 70% (16 of 23) made it. Pro basketball games involving two playoff-bound teams are exciting. Games involving lottery-bound teams are mostly unwatchable, especially late in the season. I would be in favor of expanding the NBA playoffs further.
So, let me get this straignt: you are comparing a 96-team basketball playoff with a possible 4 or 8-team football playoff? You are comparing apples and kumquats here.
I don't think you quite got the point. March Madness appears ready to explode into hugeness because of the almighty dollar. I absolutely, positively, rock-solid guarantee, and I would bet everything I own and every last dollar I've ever made and ever will make, that a football playoff, once instituted, will bloat and expand the way March Madness has. The kumquat will look a lot like an apple after all.
Love your comments. I don't think you can compare the two sports yet, but as regards basketball, your comments should be framed. 96 teams is a travesty and a mockery. It's another step on the self-esteem "everyone is good!!" train.
Even more sparsely attended games featuring even more middling teams! What a great idea.
do away with the post season NIT.
96 teams would include a wide variety of barely .500 teams. The NIT would be forced to include teams that finished 3rd from the bottom in their conferences and there would be nearly zero interest in it. Hell, I bet the in-stadium attendance would be nil because of how many people that would rather sit in a bar or at home watching 8 games simultaneously.
This is actually a really good point. I hadn't thought of that. The NIT would be even more meaningless than it is now
ESPN really is going to have to create "The Ocho" to carry this many games.
Given that it's a cash cow for every team involved and really a nice way for a larger number of schools to be excited about post-season, I kind of like it. Gamblers will be driven crazy though because the odds of the #1 team(s) making it to the Final Four will be murdered. Teams like George Mason will thrive, knock off amazing teams and then putter out against the likes of Clemson or something.
And yes I'm aware George Mason got to the Final Four. The point is that teams who puttered through the season and made it as a 22 seed (lulz, 22 seed) will get hot randomly and take out teams that normally would have made the Sweet 16 easily, etc.
That's probably the main reason why I don't like this move. Maybe it's just because I'm an NBA fan, but I kind of like seeing players in the Final Four that don't blow. Having so many teams in a single elimination tournament reduces the chances that that happens. Just playing out the odds in my head, I think you see fewer powerhouses and pure Cinderellas in the FF and more teams in the 10-25 range.
I agree. I think that 96 teams is a terrible idea because...
1.) A single elimination tournament of 64 teams, while fun to watch, is a horrible way of deciding who the "National Champion" is, and increasing it to 96 makes it worse.
3.) Dilutes the talent of the tournament, and making the NCAA tourney won't have the same clout it once did.
4.) It's obviously a stupid idea
The top 32 won't be playing any extra games. They'll have a bye. Any upsets that occur in the bottom 64 will actually make it more likely that the better teams get to the Final Four.
My understanding is that the $ from the tourney are not really dependent on being in the tourney. Although, participants get funds to offset travel costs, the "profits" from the tourney are supposedly split throughout the NCAA.
So who's ready for the first ever 24 seed upsetting a 1???
get passed a 9 seed first though, and then beat an 8 seed just to play the 1 seed in the round of 32. The 1 seed would play the winner of 16/17, if I'm imagining how the brackets would be set up with 96 teams correctly. Either way, it'd be awful to see it come to that.
Actually, wouldn't the 32 play the 17, and the winner of that would play the 1 seed? 17 would play 33 to play the two, all the way down to the 24 vs 25 to play the 16? That seems more logical to me.
I think I've gone crossed eyed trying to think through this.
Edit 2: Okay, had to map it out visually, for those of you also mentally impaired:
for 128 teams, 32 seeds in each bracket.
Yeah, I caught that right after I posted. All better after I drew it out for myself.
Why would 9 play 17 and 16 play 24? Shouldn't 9 play 24 and 16 play 17?
I would have guessed otherwise in order to set up the easiest for the 1 seed. Who do you cater for, the 9 seed or the 1 seed? I guess you could argue that they already get a bye, but I'm not sure that's the definite case.
you cater to the 1 seed assuming that the higher seed beforehand will win, so they would play the winner of 16/17 for the same reason they play the winner of 8/9 now. If all the high seeds win, the 1 seed still gets to play the lowest seed.
I think I'm about to have a seizure just following along.
#9 (the best non-bye team) should play #24 (the worst non-bye team):
#1 vs (#16 or #17)
#8 vs (#9 or #24)
#5 vs (#12 or #21)
#4 vs (#13 or #20)
#3 vs (#14 or #19)
#6 vs (#11 or #22)
#7 vs (#10 or #23)
#2 vs (#15 or #18)
Okay, just out of curiosity, who does the seeding... Because the #1 seed is playing #16/#17... Which, now are going to be Major conference schools. Because lets be honest... I can't see them extending 4 bids to the MAAC or America East Conference... So how pumped would you be if you were a 1 2 or 3 seed and had to play us in the first round. In this scenario a 16 seed is much more likely to steal a "2nd round" win...
... until that happens, the case for more teams is silly.
I think that's exactly the point, a bunch of teams around .500 (sometimes sub .500) make the playoffs in the NBA. Not coincidentally, the first round of the NBA playoffs suck. The NCAA should avoid making the tournament more like the NBA playoffs at all costs.
The problem with the NBA playoffs (specifically the first round) isn't so much the matchups as the length of the series. Making the first round best-of-seven was a big mistake. The first round takes way too long now.
I see what you did there. Nice.
You know, there's another tournament in addition to the NIT...
Basketball is murdering itself. The ratings for the Final Four have been absolutely horrid for several years. The best players only stick around for one year. Teams go irrelevant to #1 and back into the abyss over a three-year period.
Everyone's trying to make money off a business model that gets its collective data from the Bird-Magic-Jordan era and they're shocked that it just doesn't work.
Make me Lord Grand Poobah Of All Roundball and I'll fix it.
First step, adopt baseball's rule on underclassmen. No one declares for the draft...you get drafted and if you like where you got picked, you can sign. If not, you can wait until your next window comes around. Also, there is no rookie salary cap. You can negotiate for any amount.
Your first window comes as an 18 year old. There's no point in someone like Lebron James or Kevin Durant going to college, but IF you go to college, you have to wait until your 21 for the second window to come around.
Secondly, we'll be getting rid of the 64 team tournament and be dropping back to 48 teams. As far as television goes, it really doesn't matter how many games you have during the first weekend. You can't show them all...it's about blocks of time and switching from 64 to 48 doesn't impact that. #1s and #2s would get a bye for the first round (if I remember correctly on how they did it back in the early 80s). It makes the tournament tougher to get into which makes the regular season more meaningful.
Third, the NBA season will now be 50 games. It worked during the strike season...so it should work now. Also, we actually WILL be calling: Three seconds in the lane, fouls as they are written in the rule book, and travelling. Deal with it.
At least in the Ann Arbor area. There are more than a few traveling calls in each game, and I smile each time it's called.
"Also, we actually WILL be calling: Three seconds in the lane, fouls as they are written in the rule book, and travelling. Deal with it."
While they are the rules, I am of the opinion that less referee involvement = more enjoyment and better games. So, status quo for me please.
EDIT: But I am all for somehow finding a way to penalize stuff like this:
ha ha this made me laugh.
isaiah thomas + zach randolph = awesomely pathetic
I thought that there was a lawsuit between the NIT and the NCAA, and as part of the settlement, the NIT agreed to fold at some point. I know this too sounds like an Onion story, but I couldn't make some of this stuff up if I tried...
I actually thought the NCAA bought the NIT and they were now run by the same people?
You're right. So, would a 96-team NCAA tourney coincide with the termination of the NIT? Who plays in the NIT if there are 96 teams in the NCAA? Would it be shirts versus skins in a church gymnasium?
Tommy Amaker this didn't happen about five years ago.
I wonder which major conference gets every team in first? It's too much, It's not like a #14 seed has ever won it all, it's just going to guarantee another 25 or so blow outs and three or so upsets--of which we see about three total minutes.
The revenue race is excessive.
When you ascend to your thrown could you please instruct the refs to whistle somebody, anybody (I don't care if its the mascot) for carrying? Did they do away with that rule?
Bottom 32 play middle 32, & top 32 get 1st round bye?
reasonable way to do it based on competitive balance. however, that would produce some awfully shitty attendance and ratings. I'm not taking a two hour lunch in early March to watch Utah State play Bowling Green in round 1 of the NCAA tournament.
they could have a 3 week, 32 team play-in tournament for that 64th spot.
With 96 teams making it into the tourney, I have decided to start my own team, and try to make it in. Here are the conditions and qualifications of making my roster
1. You have to be old enough to remember when Michigan was good at basketball. (If I sound bitter it is only because of my previous, ill-fated, optimism for this year)
2. Had to have played in High School, but not since then. (As coach, I don't want to have to bench myself)
3. Lastly, and there is no delicate way to say this, you gotta be fat. The team strategy is to fill the lane as much as possible, and to wear old style tight uniforms to distract opposing team. It is easy to score a layup when they are grossed out and don't want to touch you. Besides myself and Charlie Weis, who else is a part of this dream-team? In a 96 team field, we will probably be favored in the first round.
I don't know how to do the little block-quote thingy...so, "So, let me get this straignt: you are comparing a 96-team basketball playoff with a possible 4 or 8-team football playoff? You are comparing apples and kumquats here."
Yes, I'm comparing them. Right now, the college football season is the most meaningful regular season that we have. You can't take any games off. Every game matters and plays a significant role (eight and half percent) in your final destiny.
Adding a playoff means there's a safety net and it means that regular season games mean less and less. And once you start down that path, you're not solving problems, you're just making them bigger.
The regular season would mean less and you'd just change the argument from "who is #1 vs #2?) to "who is #8 vs. #9?" So you make the tournament bigger...which makes the regular season mean less and changes the argument again. And on...and on...and on.
You know why the D. I-AA playoff works? Because no one gives a shit. Who cares who wins? Who cares who makes it in?
Every year, come March, there is an argument about who gets and who got left out. And that argument goes right up until the tournament tips off and then no one gives a shit.
Expanding the tournament to 96 teams makes as much sense as adding 30 more bowl games.
But if no major sports sources report it, and this happens, I'm going to have to ignore this.