Dribbling into March Madness

By: Jake Harvey

All season long, fans, players, and coaches anxiously wait for March to start. Every March, 64 division 1 men’s basketball teams are selected to play in a tournament. The winner of the tournament is the National Champion, and the tournament is called March Madness. Each team in the tournament is given a seed number 1-16, one being the best seed and sixteen being the worst. The bracket matches up so a one seed will end up playing a sixteen seed to take pressure off the one seed, which has earned its position in the regular season.

This year’s tournament came with many overtime thrillers and second round upsets. The first round of the tournament is all play-in games that decide the last teams in the bracket that will go on to play a very good seeded team. The second round is where all the action starts; 64 teams play 32 games to decide who will make it to the third round. In this year’s tournament, the one-seeded teams were Villanova, Duke, Wisconsin, and Kentucky. Kentucky started their season with a perfect 38-0 before suffering a loss in the Final Four against an experienced Wisconsin team. The bracket starts with the original 64 teams, then to the last 32, next, the Sweet Sixteen, then, the Elite Eight, later, the Final Four, and, finally, the National Championship. This year’s Final Four and National Championship were held at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. In the championship game, the Duke Blue Devils faced off against the Wisconsin Badgers. The Blue Devils edged the Badgers with a final score of 68-63.

My brother, dad, and I got the opportunity to see the second and third round of March Madness on March 19 and 21. We saw six total games and the teams we saw were: Villanova, Lafayette, NC State, LSU, Notre Dame, Butler, Texas, and Northeastern. The Squire caught up with Ben Harvey to learn more about March Madness and his trip.

The Squire: Who were you rooting for in this year’s March Madness?

Ben Harvey: I was hoping Kentucky would win it all because I wanted to see a perfect season.

TS: Are you rooting for Kentucky because you are a longtime fan or did you just have them winning in your bracket?

BH: I had Kentucky winning in my bracket this year and I wanted to see a perfect season, but I am not a true fan of Kentucky.

TS: How was your trip to Pittsburgh? Did you get to see any of the teams you were hoping to see?

BH: Our trip to Pittsburgh was awesome. We saw lots of good games and ate lots of good food. The teams we saw this year were great because we usually see the same teams like Syracuse and UConn, but this year we got to see new teams like Notre Dame and Villanova.

TS: Did you get to meet any of the players on your trip?

BH: We stayed in the same hotel as the LSU team so we got to meet a few of them, and my cousins stayed in the same hotel as Villanova because my one cousin coached Villanova’s star player, Darrun Hilliard, so we went over to their hotel on Friday.

For next season, go to espn.com and enter the bracket challenge for the chance to win $1 billion from Warren Buffett.

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