I challenge you . . . I promise you

March 18, 2009 | 20 comments
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I challenge you — all of you, collectively — to match up your bracket against mine. (And, well, everyone else who is also matching up their bracket against mine.)Yes, it’s that time of year.  My own prefered vehicle for bracket beatdown is ESPN.com, which has a free bracket challenge option.  (Plus, if you beat out the other 50,000 people and have the best bracket in the country, you win 10 grand, or something like that.  A nice little bonus on the side.) 

If you feel up to the challenge, click here to join the group.  (I put a password on, to keep the rifraff out.  Password is “Bannergate”).  You’ll need to register for a (free) ESPN.com user name if you don’t already have one.

There is no office pool, because we are very very opposed to gambling here in Casablanca.  Instead, what is at stake is far more important — honor, glory, and bragging rights.  

May the best bracket win!

(My own picks — ASU, UCLA, and Utah as mild upsets in the Sweet 16; Western Kentucky and Miss State as cinderella longshots.  Utah State upsets Marquette but not Missouri, and BYU’s run ends when they hit a U-Conn shaped wall.  Memphis, UNC, Pitt, and Kansas make the final four, and Memphis takes it all.)

Tell me that I’m wrong.  :)

20 Responses to I challenge you . . . I promise you

  1. Steve Evans on March 18, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    Bannergate is a copyrighted term!

    Kulturblog is also hosting a bracket tourney, mighty and strong.

  2. Morgan Deane on March 18, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    I’m not kidding when I say this: you had all the same upsets as me! I am on a facebook pool and have my own hand held paper copy. But its good to see that I am not the only one with a weird group of upsets.

  3. Kevin Barney on March 18, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    BYU will never see UConn. They haven’t won a tournament game in years, even when they’ve been the higher seed. They’ll be one and done, as always. (He writes in the hopes that they’ll make him eat his words.)

  4. Michelle Glauser on March 18, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    I just fought with the website. For anyone else wanting to join, the password is lower-case: bannergate.

  5. Hunter on March 18, 2009 at 3:27 pm

    [fasting and praying that Kevin Barney has to eat his words . . .]

  6. Kaimi Wenger on March 18, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    Thanks for the update, Michelle. I thought I had typed it uppercase, but I guess not.

    Steve, you’re the riffraff I was talking about in the OP.

  7. John Williams on March 18, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    The selection committee seems to be prejudiced against Mormons. Every year BYU gets a tought opponent for the first game. It’s like they let us in just so they can see us fall.

  8. chas on March 18, 2009 at 8:35 pm

    How come Kaimi has two entries. Is he trying to beat the system by increasing his odds?

  9. Kaimi Wenger on March 19, 2009 at 12:41 am

    I didn’t mean to put them both in, chas. I lost my entry for a bit and thought it had been eaten by the computer. But it’s found and all is well.

  10. Adam Greenwood on March 19, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    I’m shocked that KW is wasting his time on brackets. Hello, the economy? Focusing like a laser?

  11. Kaimi on March 19, 2009 at 5:42 pm

    And it looks like Kevin was on the money. Another year, another first-round exit for the Cougs . . .

  12. Brian Duffin on March 20, 2009 at 9:54 am

    Your post would carry much more weight with me had you not invoked the title of a Paul H. Dunn book and used “Bannergate” in the same post. Scandalous!!!

  13. queuno on March 20, 2009 at 4:26 pm

    The selection committee seems to be prejudiced against Mormons. Every year BYU gets a tought opponent for the first game. It’s like they let us in just so they can see us fall.

    Would you have preferred Dayton? ETSU? Cal State-Northridge?

    Then BYU would have lost by 30.

  14. Kaimi Wenger on March 20, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    Or Butler, or Michigan, Western Kentucky, VCU . . .

    Yeah. BYU just did not show up at all. The teams they could have beaten with that showing is pretty small.

    Note that, BYU had the best record in the MWC, and Texas A&M was tied for fourth in the Big 12.

    If tied-for-4th-in-the-Big-12 is officially a tough draw for the team with the MWC’s best record, then BYU fans need to stop whining about how no one takes the MWC seriously.

  15. diana on March 21, 2009 at 1:41 am

    TIMES AND SEASONS.

  16. queuno on March 21, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    BYU should become a D-II basketball program and a D-1AA football program.

  17. queuno on March 21, 2009 at 4:41 pm

    I think the other thing to consider is the fact that BYU won’t play on a Sunday, so they can ONLY be seeded in pairings that will play Thursday/Saturday on BOTH the first two weekends.

    I looked at all of the schedules, dates, venues and came up with these initial seeding possibilities for BYU given the date criteria:

    West:
    1 – 16 (UConn vs. Chattanooga)
    8 – 9 (BYU v. Texas A&M)
    5 – 12 (Purdue v. N.Iowa)
    4 – 13 (Washington vs. MissSt)
    7 – 10 (Cal v. Maryland)
    2 – 15 (Memphis v. CSU-Northridge)

    East:
    6 – 11 (UCLA v. VCU)
    3 – 14 (Villanova v. American)
    7 – 10 (Texas v. Minnesota)
    2 – 15 (Duke v. Binghamton)

    So of 32 possible options, only 10 are available to BYU.

    Finishing with a three-way tie for the regular season championship in the MWV, and losing in the MWV tournament semifinals, it’s safe to say that they weren’t going to be a 1, 2, 3, or 4 seed in any region. (Consider that being the 25th-ranked team in the country basically qualifies you to be a 7 seed). Purdue won the Big 10 tourney and was only a 5 seed. What’s left? Two 7-10 games, an 8-9 game (where they ended up, and it should be noted that the committee gave BYU the 8 and A&M the 9), and a 6-11 game.

    OK, so let’s say that they would have been given the 6 or 7 seeds. Then they would have played Maryland, Minnesota, or VCU.

    I think the committee was extremely *fair* with BYU this year. This was the best option for them to win, given their actual record of play and their requirements for only Thursday/Saturday games.

  18. Geoff J on March 22, 2009 at 9:44 pm

    If tied-for-4th-in-the-Big-12 is officially a tough draw for the team with the MWC’s best record, then BYU fans need to stop whining about how no one takes the MWC seriously.

    True dat Kaimi, true dat.

  19. bbell on March 23, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    When was the last time BYU won a Tourney game? ten years? 15?

    Its been so long I cannot even remember.

    BYU football is much better than BYU BBALL

  20. clark on March 23, 2009 at 4:10 pm

    Football is better than Basketball. Period.