Bracket-mania is an obsession for some, minor distraction for others


Madi Field

Powell High school students filled out their brackets for the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

Coming down with March Madness before the big dance may sound like an excuse to skip prom but it actually describes the obsession with the NCAA Basketball Tournaments around the United States. This 68-team basketball tournament has been known to crown a Cinderella or two and turn millions of Americans into illegal gamblers. It’s that good.

March Madness: a month where students are failing all their classes just so they can keep up to date with watching basketball on their laptops while pretending to write an essay.

Many enthusiastic Americans fill out brackets whether they even care about basketball; they still make brackets. In fact, some 39.2 percent of all brackets show Duke as the champ this year.

“I picked Duke to win it all because they have the top three freshman in the country,” junior Colin Queen said. “I like March Madness because it’s so hard to pick which team is actually going to win, I also like basketball in general.”

Some PHS senior boys completed the NCAA brackets. Trent Dicks picked Gonzaga over Tennessee, 79-76. Brinson Cozzens has Duke over North Carolina, 84-76. And Cameron Lamb picked Tennessee over Duke, 81-76.

Picking winners, however, doesn’t guarantee success. For example senior wrestler Cole Davis picked Virginia over Duke 42-36, and also senior wrestler Reese Karst didn’t pick a champion but predicted a score of 74-66.

“I felt like Virginia was just the better choice and I know nothing about basketball and nothing about March Madness,” Davis said. “It was a good way not to work in class for 20 minutes.”

But for other kids, it is business as usual, keeping up their grades, doing homework and actually paying attention in class (because they are not distracted by watching live games on mobile devices.)

“When people watch March Madness, I think it’s funny because they waste a bunch of their time, like I’m talking about the boys with their phones out during track warm-ups just to see another two minutes of the game,” sophomore Elsie Spomer said. “My whole family is much more of a baseball family. I would rather watch baseball than basketball.”

For some the middle of March through the beginning of April may be a miserable time, but for others it’s a way to get distracted from everything you’re doing … to watch college basketball teams compete that you probably won’t care about until after the beginning of April.