I love the month of March. Why? Two words that both start with the letter M. March Madness.
March Madness is the definition of amazing (according to www.jordansdictionary.com which is a site I made up for this column). It’s filled with all sorts of excitement, from the last second buzzer beaters to the Cinderella teams. I enjoy every minute of the high-drama madness, but some people love it a bit too much.
There is a new proposal of expanding the tournament so it consists of 96 teams instead of the current 64 (65 if you count the who-loses-to-Kansas-in-the-first-round game), and this proposal is absolutely ridiculous.
First of all, imagine being a team that doesn’t make it. You may as well just give up the basketball program at that school forever. Second of all, it will diminish the importance of the regular season. Not only that, but it would also put Dick Vitale on the air for at least another week and that just isn’t fair.
The NCAA tournament should not be a participation ribbon, they stop giving those out after grade school. Expanding to 96 teams is like having a night club with no bouncers. The bouncers are there to only let in a select few, not the whole city.
The main reason for this absurd proposal is to give the NCAA more money by gaining more television time which will sell more advertisements. Another argument to expand the tourney is ‘so many teams deserve to get in each year’, and my response to that is tough luck. Welcome to the world of sports and competitiveness.
In all sports every year there are many teams that just fall short. That’s the fun of watching the regular season. The teams on the bubble should be ones the public is interested in. I don’t think the E*Trade baby is going to be premiering a new commercial during the Wright State VS Fairfield game.
There’s an old saying, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ and that applies in this situation. The tournament has been running smoothly for years and there isn’t a reason to change anything now. The current system is practically flawless. It’s the right amount of time (3 weeks), it allows for a great blend of big versus small, and it gives a realistic chance for many of the teams to actually win the National Championship.
People can only take so much of things. I love eating Pizza, but I can’t eat two whole boxes of it. Sometimes you need to put a limit on things. Not to mention it would take FOREVER to fill out my college basketball bracket.
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