Well, another NCAA men’s basketball tournament has come and gone, and I watched fewer games this year than I have in a long time. I blame it on having a fantastic wife who I don’t see very often, school work, late start times, and overall a fairly lackluster tournament.
There were few bright spots (for me) in this year’s tournament – Davidson was fun to watch (though they knocked out my Final Four hopeful Georgetown in the second round), West Virginia warmed my heart in beating Duke, as did Michigan State in romping over highly overrated Pittsburgh. I’m also a John Calipari fan, so I enjoyed seeing his Tigers march their way to the championship game. But other than that, there weren’t many great moments of the tournament. There seemed to be more blowouts than normal, and fewer magical upsets. Having all four #1 seeds in the Final Four for the first time should have made for some intriguing matchups, but UNC and UCLA laid eggs.
I was torn in the championship game. I am not a huge fan of Kansas (though I’d take them over Duke, UNC, or UCLA any day), and “roooock, chaaaaalk, jaaaaayhaaawk” freaks me out a bit, but I drew Kansas in the random number bracket my friends do. I ended up with my second “championship,” joining Momper as the only ones with two, but it wasn’t as satisfying knowing that deep down, I really wanted Memphis to win.
In the 6th Annual Pearce Bracket Challenge, Katie Gustafson rode Kansas to the $150 jackpot. She is the third female to win the Challenge, and definitely earned it thanks to her painstaking research. She is a third grade teacher in Georgia, married to Seth, who is a grad student at UGA. That’s a dedicated wife – studying hard for the Bracket Challenge to support her graduate student of a husband. Congrats, Katie. Oh yeah, and it’s Seth’s birthday tomorrow. Quite a week for the Gustafson couple.