From the Bleachers – Got brackets?

With all the high school sports action going on yesterday, I nearly forgot that today was selection day that starts up March Madness.

Yes, I realize that my statement could be considered blasphemous to the die-hard NCAA tournament fans, but in my defense, I’ve been dedicated to focusing on local and state sports. Not that college basketball outside of Hawai‘i isn’t important, it is, but it just wasn’t at the top of my list.

Last year, I got to watch plenty of it because I had a lot of free time on my hands. I don’t have that much now because I’m out on the weekends covering the KIF.

The funny thing about last year is, that since I’m from Virginia, I wanted to pick George Mason to go far in my bracket. I visited George Mason a million times because that’s where we held our state track meets.

Then when I was on tour with the Virginia Opera Association, we used the George Mason field house for the productions. So I wanted to pick them and root for them out of loyalty.

The key word is that I “wanted” to pick George Mason. I totally didn’t though, because I wanted to win the bracket.

I figured the way to win the bracket is to predict the team who is actually going to win, and not who you “want” to win.

Needless to say, had I went with my original idea of slapping down George Mason to the final four, I most likely would’ve won.

Oh well, at least I learned my lesson for this year.

Today, the NCAA will select a 65-team field who will go into the tournament. As soon as they do, you know the Internet will be flooded with people filling out their brackets.

You can even go to The Garden Island’s Web site and register for our “Hoops Challenge” and fill out a bracket, for free, there.

For those who have never filled out a bracket before or entered a challenge, this is how it works.

The names of the teams will be announced and the teams will be paired up in first round games. All you do is choose the team you think will advance each round, all the way to the big game.

For our “Hoops Challenge,” the object is to rack up as many points of the 1,680 possible, to win. Finish by entering a tie-breaking score in the “total points” box and the bottom of the brackets.

It’s actually a lot of fun even if you’re not really a basketball fan. I like doing it because I like winning things.

But I also like filling out the brackets because then you have a team to root for and you have an excuse to invite people over to make an event of it.

So, I didn’t completely drop off the college hoops radar, I knew it was coming up because it was March.

As soon as the teams are announced, I’ll make my picks. Some people have it down to a science, analyzing players and looking at the team’s track records.

But that doesn’t always work. George Mason would be a good example of that because no one saw their success coming. We’ll see how I do this year.

To register for our “Hoops Challenge,” visit and click the “Hoops Challenge” icon on the right.

Good luck with your brackets.


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