Bracketology as a College Elective?

Phil AndrewsCorrespondent IJanuary 14, 2010

Leave it to a basketball crazy school like Philadelphia's St. Joseph's University. Yes, believe it or not you can actually take a class in how to fill out you college basketball brackets for March Madness and actually get credit towards your degree. Well, not quite.

The Fundamentals of Bracketology Provide a firm understanding of the principles of "Bracketology" as applied to Division I college basketball and the NCAA® men's basketball championship.

It includes a history of the NCAA Tournament ("March Madness®"), the team selection and seeding process, and the analysis undertaken by individual schools and conferences to position themselves for NCAA championship participation.

The course will also explore the most common misconceptions "behind the bracket" as portrayed by the print/electronic media. Students will learn to conduct realistic mock brackets.

The course will consist of eight modules and is designed to be completed within eight weeks. The material covered will include such topics as an introduction to “NCAA March Madness;" a History of the NCAA Tournament; NCAA Selection Committee(s), the Selection Process, Seeding and Bracketing, RPI, the construction of mock brackets, and finally the building of your own bracket.

Each module will include one  or two readings as well as discussion board time with Joe, where he will pose a question and then engage in conversation with you and your fellow students. The final “exam” in the course will be the construction of an NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament bracket to be graded by Joe. Successful completion of the course will earn a Certificate of Completion from Saint Joseph’s University as well as the option of having your final exam (final bracket) signed by Joe.

Who is Joe you ask?  

Joseph Lunardi (AKA "Joey Brackets") a college basketball analyst for ESPN. He was born in Philadelphia and is a graduate of Saint Joseph's University (Philadelphia).

Lunardi is best known for creating Bracketology, defined as the "art and science" of forecasting teams that will be selected for the annual NCAA men's basketball championship. Since 2002, he has become a fixture on ESPN's college basketball programming and has been writing for since its inception.

Lunardi correctly forecast all 65 teams for the 2008 NCAA Tournament and has averaged no more than one missed team for the past eight seasons.

As you would expect Seating is limited. There will be 12 sections of the course, with a maximum of twenty  students per section. Four sections will launch on January 18, 2010, four more on February 15, 2010, and the final four to launch on March 15, 2010. As a note, the NCAA’s Selection Sunday™ is Sunday March 14, 2010. The cost is just $249.