Countdown to the Madness and Last Minute Tweaks

Submitted by los barcos on March 21st, 2013 at 10:25 AM


We’re only a couple hours away to the greatest few days of sports, and if you’re anything like me then the work productivity for the week has already stopped.

I know we’ve discussed this all week, but let this be the final frenzied discussions for those making the last minute tweaks before our brackets are set.

Things I am thinking about this morning:

-          Is the SEC worse than what we all thought – and is Florida in the final four a bad pick?

-          Only a handful of times have all #2 seeds made it to the sweet sixteen – who’s leaving early?  I’ve got SDSU over Georgetown.  Am I crazy?

-          Last minute gut upsets?  I’ve put Belmont over both Arizona and New Mexico.

-          Anyone else nervously scanning their brackets??


los barcos

March 21st, 2013 at 10:36 AM ^

It's like the old adage from high school - if you're unsure about an answer, go with your original choice.  I, on the other hand, am in full-blown tweak mode and probably will wind up doing more damage. Oh well.  

This seems to me to be the most wide-open bracket that I can remember, and I feel like some frenetic addict anxiously awaiting tip-off.  


March 21st, 2013 at 10:42 AM ^

The Gonzaga/(hopefully)Pitt matchup is going to give me fits.

I want to go with Gonzaga, because they are honestly 10x more legit than people give them credit for, but Kenpom is telling me that Pitt is going to the Final Four.  This makes or breaks my bracket.

Also, I have no idea what versions of Kansas, Florida, or Minnesota teams we're getting so goodbye any confidence I had in the South.

And I can't bring myself to rationally believe it won't come down to Louisville/Indiana, but I'm guessing that's true of about 65% of the brackets, so naturally neither will make the Final Four.

And so it begins...



March 21st, 2013 at 10:42 AM ^

I like north carolina over Kansas...  paving the way for michigan to beat N.C.!


side note:  I just filled out 5 brackets on and picked all lower than five seeds to win: I had Memphis, Oklahoma, Butler, Arizona, and St. Mary's to win...  Anybody else try any crazy brackets?




March 21st, 2013 at 10:49 AM ^

Also, I'm submitting a straight no-upset bracket with Louisville over Kansas.  Did this in 2008, when everyone was going upset-crazy in their bracket selections (and no one saw Davidson coming anyway) and won one of my pools in a landslide.


March 21st, 2013 at 10:54 AM ^

For about two decades now, an "all-chalk" bracket usually gets near, but never actually enough, to win most pools. I'm sure there are outlier anecdotal examples like yours, but as a general matter, chalk won't talk.

That seems particularly true here this year. The #1's didn't have remarkably different seasons from the #4's; we have a #11 favored over a #6; etc. It's just nuts how unpredictable this is going to be.

So, good luck with that, but, it's probably not going to work -- particularly because IU can't seem to put 6 wins in a row no matter whom they play.


March 21st, 2013 at 11:37 AM ^

I agree with the fact that they usually never work.

However, with parity this year, I feel like everyone is a little upset-happy.  Everyone thinks that there is no way that #1s can hit the Final Four together and therefore no one is picking them.  Everyone is looking for the upset.  I've seen more brackets write off Kansas and Gonzaga like they weren't close to being contenders than not.

I'm not saying this is the best strategy, but I feel a little bit more confident putting in one chalk bracket this year. 

Wolverine Devotee

March 21st, 2013 at 10:52 AM ^

That San Diego State win over GT, would be amazing.

I would love nothing more than a Michigan-San Diego State Elite Eight matchup.

Beilein vs Fisher. 

I don't care what anyone says about Fish with the "did he or did he not know what was going on with Ed Martin" business. I'll always love him for coaching that 1988-89 team to the title. 


March 21st, 2013 at 10:56 AM ^

Ugh, you just described my inner conflict re: how I feel about Steve Fisher.  I love him, but I hate him.  

Having said that, I'm also rooting for that Michigan vs. SDSU matchup.  I hope we get to see it and Michigan stomps Fisher a new shit-hole.  


March 21st, 2013 at 10:58 AM ^

So.... you'll good trading in the one national championship, in exchange for TWENTY YEARS of basketball embarrassment, irrelevance and general depression?

Hmm.  Umm... no.

Fisher, to me, is the posterboy for NCAA hypocricy.  The NCAA slammed the program -- rightly so -- for "lack of institutional control."  Well, who was the Institution?  It was FISH.  He was the head guy, he was the guy where all this was happening directly under his nose -- in his locker room, with his players taking trips on weekends, etc.  So, if "the institution" was at fault, then Fisher has to be #1 guy at fault.

But, the NCAA doesn't want to go around punishing people -- that causes (eek!) lawsuits.  Read:  Tark the Shark.  So, its easier to just punish the program (which wont fight back -- its a member institution), than to punish the actual do-badders.

Dude never got punished for causing all that pain we suffered.  Championship or not, he's at fault.


March 21st, 2013 at 10:56 AM ^

which I am struggling to stick with as my overall winner.  I'm still thinking Louisville is the lower risk pick, but this makes it more interesting I guess.


1989 UM GRAD

March 21st, 2013 at 11:07 AM ^

Just did the Wall Street Journal blind bracket and picked VCU to beat Michigan.

I also ended up with a final four made up of all the #1 seeds.

I do have some good news to report, however.  My 9 year old daughter filled out her bracket last night...and she has both Michigan State and Ohio State losing in the round of 64.  When I explained that there is almost no chance that either team will lose and that it would hurt her chances of winning the pool in which we participate, she said that she didn't care...and that she always roots against both teams.  She's clearly being raised the right way.  I'm filled with nachas!


March 21st, 2013 at 11:08 AM ^

I've got an all big ten final four. Michigan, MSU, OSU, and IU. I got IU beating us again. If we couldn't beat them twice this year I can't see us doing it in the tourney.

EZ Bud

March 21st, 2013 at 11:12 AM ^

The CBS Sports server has been down for the last hour, so I wasn't able to make any last minute changes. I'm not even sure my brackets got saved, to be honest. I was in the middle of tweaking some picks when the server crashed.

los barcos

March 21st, 2013 at 11:13 AM ^

everyone have coming out of the South?  Can someone assuage my fears re Florida - or convince me to put someone else there?  Would love to go Michigan - but I just don't see them playing well that consistently to get to the Final Four...


March 21st, 2013 at 11:38 AM ^

but I'm ready to jump ship on Florida. I had them going to at least the Elite 8 in several of my brackets, but it looks like all the "SEC is terrible" memes are true and then some


March 21st, 2013 at 12:00 PM ^

In the three brackets that I have floating out there in space (one of them literally, as it was a spreadsheet), I didn't have Florida any farther than the Elite Eight. It was hard for me to envision that, once they had this opportunity to play teams from higher rated, more competitive conferences, that they would not meet someone better than they are. It was also difficult for me to reconcile their particular #3 seed and yet being closer to 30th (per StatSheet's numbers) in SOS despite being #9 in RPI. I just see a few potential stumbling blocks for Florida. 


March 21st, 2013 at 2:06 PM ^

The only time I ever felt confident with my picks was a few years ago when I correctly chose UConn to go all the way. This year, I feel more insecure than ever. This could get ugly.


March 21st, 2013 at 2:22 PM ^

As weak as I think MSU and Duke are (as in not really, but not dominant), I really should have had someone other than Louisville coming out of the Midwest on 80% of my brackets.