Is there really a point of filling a bracket out anymore? Or let’s take it even further filling out 5 or 6 of them? The odds of winning or even coming close are rivaling the Powerball. This year there have been so many “upsets” that it has caused many to give up on their brackets even when just picking from round to round. VCU and Butler (as I stated in my article “Little Giants” on the Ruffle my feathers blog) are two of the teams I suspected of doing some damage this year, but I didn’t expect this. I predicted that some of these big teams would choke as usual when playing “smaller” and hungrier schools, but I never imagined it would be like this.
Only 2 out of 5.9 million brackets on ESPN had predicted this final four. 1 of those participants admitted he has no ties to VCU or Butler he just picked them because they seemed hungry. That story sounds a bit far fetched being as though both teams limped into the tournament. I’m starting to think that guy had referees and opposing players tied up in his basement before their designated games. Sounds a bit far fetched but so does the fact that someone actually picked VCU AND Butler before the tournament even began to reach the final four. Now Connecticut and Kentucky have great history and (1) great coach to mention, I don’t particularly care for Calipari nor his coaching style but it is admirable what he has done with the 3 programs he has been associated with.
Another stunning statistic would be that only 7% of those 5.9 million brackets picked all four of these teams to get past the second round. That’s stunning to me but not surprising because you had the resident “power” teams in Duke, Kansas, North Carolina, and Pittsburgh. As we all know Pittsburgh chokes in close games, North Carolina depends too much on talent, Kansas is always known to mess up in supposed easy games, and Duke even with a customary easy road to the sweet sixteen and phantom foul calls lost again to a more athletic team.
Overall this has been the best year to date for myself in terms of pure basketball pandemonium this March and I loved every minute of it. I’m rooting for the supposed small market schools to pull out the win preferably VCU because it shows that neither youth/experience nor ethnicity is a hindrance; it is motivation to be victorious. With that being said maybe Kentucky losing will actually keep some of Calipari’s freshman IN school for more than year; Kemba Walker of Connecticut may think about coming back to do it again; VCU may be able to build a dynasty off of this great season; or help Butler continue to defy odds despite critics saying, “They are a team that lacks star power”.
Let’s go VCU!