March Madness 2012: 15 Best Things to Do with Your Winning Bracket

Gene Siudut@@GeneSiudutContributor IIIMarch 14, 2012

March Madness 2012: 15 Best Things to Do with Your Winning Bracket

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    So, you’re looking at your NCAA tournament bracket and you know you’re a sure thing to win that precious moolah from your office pool. Your picks are carefully thought out and there’s no way Jameson in accounting can win again this year, right?

    You’ve already spent the money in your head, but one question remains.

    What do you do with the tournament sheet?

    The money will go quickly, but the bracket can remain for as long as you want. There has to be a way to immortalize your prolific prognostication beyond the insincere congratulatory email you got from the bracket manager. You’re the next Kreskin of office pools and people need to know just how brilliant you are…at picking games.

    For those of you without a plan, I’ve come up with a list of things you can do with your winning sheet.

    Some are a little braggadocious, but most are just annoying, which is how we like it!

    There’s no reason all those trash talkers shouldn’t get a taste of their own medicine. All I ask in return is that anyone who wins their bracket and uses one of these ideas sends a picture my way. You can email me at

    For your printable bracket for the 2012 NCAA tournament, click here. 

Make Placemats

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    Now that you’re a winner and can afford groceries for a change, maybe it’s time to upgrade those placemats you’ve hated ever since your girlfriend bought them. After all, ramen noodles can be eaten anywhere, but steak needs to be eaten the proper way—on top of your laminated bracket copies.

    Now, anytime your friends come over to eat, you have an excuse to remind them just how smart you are.

    Note: These must be kept in a safe place because your girlfriend will throw them out.


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    Perhaps you’d like to take up a new skill. Why not Origami?

    If your burned-out art teacher from high school can do it, surely someone of your mental acumen can tackle folding paper.

    Just take your tournament sheet and fold it into the mascot of the team that wins the pool for you.

    This works best with birds, so it’s best not to root for teams with indefinable mascots such as Hoosiers, Shockers or Racers.

Enhance Your Résumé

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    Anyone can apply for a job. You can apply for a job and show you have the smarts to make it far.

    All you need to do is print your résumé on the backside of your winning bracket. Once your future boss sees this he or she will be immediately impressed.

    If this person doesn’t notice, drop a subtle hint in your résumé by using words in a meaningful way instead of just boring your new employer to death.

    For example, you’ve been using the word “utilize” in résumés since the word was invented. How about finally using it properly with this sentence, under skills:

    “I utilized my winning NCAA tournament bracket to print this résumé.”

    Trust me, it will be a crowd pleaser.


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    You’ve had a pair of your baby shoes bronzed on the shelf ever since you grew out of them. Isn’t it time to bronze something of significance?

    I can’t give away a trade secret, but I made a few calls, and it is possible. It will, of course, need to be printed with raised print, but with a little work, your tournament pool can be preserved for posterity.


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    I won’t lie, I don’t know anything about the fermenting process, but there are people who do.

    Why not take your pool and blend it up and let it mature with your favorite homemade beer and drink it up so that your genius will not be lost on a piece of paper, but infused back into the very genes that spawned it in the first place? Mixing beer and winning sounds like the perfect combo to me.

    There has to be a way to make this happen.

Thank You Letters

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    You’ve got class.

    It’s time to show it by printing out copies of your bracket and writing a nice thank you letter on the backside of it.

    You can mail it to all the participants of your pool who were kind enough to enhance your bank account while they suffered in agony.

    Thank you letters scream good manners. It’s time to showcase yours.

Time Capsule

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    You never know when your time will be up and you're standing at the gates of St. Peter. It’s probably a good idea to preserve your good fortune so that future generations can bask in your fulfilled prophecies.

    A time capsule says that you cared enough to pass along what was important.

    Is anything bigger than this?

Postage Stamps

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    There’s no denying the US Postal Service is hurting. Maybe it’s time to support those faithful letter carriers with your own personalized stamp.

    You can take the image of your bracket and create real US postage through the USPS—rather easily, I might add.

    Not only are you helping an institution, but you’ll be sharing your victory with people you’ve never met. If there’s a better form of benevolence, I don’t want to know about it.


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    Maybe your palate isn’t as refined as others and you just want to annoy the heck out of the naysayers who didn’t believe you could win the pool.

    Just one tournament sheet can provide hours of entertaining spitballs, aimed at your fiercest competitors.

    I suggest for safety that this only be done by the burliest of bullies, otherwise, you may be on the business end of a few whuppins.


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    You’ve been waiting for years to get a tattoo, but you just haven’t found anything meaningful in your life that you would want to permanently ink on your body.

    Problem solved.

    Get your tournament chart tattooed anywhere you choose. It’s just lines and letters, so it won’t hurt...much.

High School Reunion

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    Perhaps you’ve been fretting about whether or not to make it back to Jersey for that dreaded high school reunion.

    You haven’t exactly been a roaring success in the last decade or two, so having to answer annoying questions about what you’ve been doing doesn’t appeal to you.

    Now, when someone asks you what you’ve been doing for the last 20 years, you need only to reach into your pocket and unfold a little thing you brought with you called a winning tournament bracket.

    The party can now commence.

    So buy that plane ticket—you’ve earned it.

Road Trip

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    This victory doesn’t need to be yours alone. Maybe you’ve been meaning to take the kids on a trip, but you didn’t know where to go.

    You now have your answer.

    Just take the kids on a trip to see the campuses of all the teams that helped you win your pool. You may have to spend their college fund to do it, but you just made a winning moment a teachable moment.

    You just can’t put a price on that.

Win Back That Girl

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    She left you three months ago because things just weren’t the way they were when you met. You know you can change, but she just doesn’t believe you.

    Nothing a winning tournament pool can’t fix.

    Just show her your victorious sheet and she’ll be adding epsom salt to your bath water in no time.

Halloween Costume

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    You could always save your bracket for October and use it as your Halloween costume.

    All it takes is a trench coat and some string and you have yourself one beautiful costume.

    You also have a chance to use awesome pickup lines such as, “Would you like to make it to the elite eight?”

    You’re welcome.

Do What I Do

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    Of course, you could just do what I do, which is put the winning pool in a pile with the rest of them.

    Karma does work quickly, you know.