The perfect bracket? 1 in 9.2 quintillion

Jack Harvey, Staff Writer

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When was the last time you looked at your bracket? Not since the round of 32? Many brackets deemed to be “the one” have now found the bottom of a wastebasket.

At this point, your March Madness bracket should be six feet under after some of the upsets that happened over this past week. Michigan and Wisconsin worked up some Big Ten magic as eight and nine seeds to get all the way to the Sweet Sixteen only to get kicked out ending their hopes.

South Carolina State showed that basketball isn’t just a North Carolina sport, making their way to the elite eight as a ten seed. Meanwhile, Xavier, a school who literally burned the month of Feb. and put the ashes in a jar made it to the elite eight as well.

Oregon also worked its way to the elite eight, looking to win the first title since 1939, the first NCAA basketball tournament.

With all the upsets and last second shots, it makes you wonder if you can really pick a perfect bracket. Some argue that not much goes into a bracket selections but a lot does go into how you select. Some do the traditional high seed advances, others pick by the mascot/school colors, then there are some who watch film on teams to help their picks and find that Cinderella team to make a historic run.

The strangest system of all is “the Duke never wins” system. If you’re a college basketball fan, you either love them or hate them. Sometimes you hate them so much you make sure they don’t advance past the second round every year. Is it efficient? Of course not, but when it happens like it did this year, you look like an absolute genius.

It’s tough not to just go with all the high seeds when filling out your bracket. You think they’re the high seed for a reason; why should you question the committee who makes the brackets? This year was not a good year to go with that system. The seeding for teams was all messed up this year.

Wisconsin and Michigan got the eight and nine seed while Minnesota (who lost to Wisconsin twice) got a five seed. Some could argue that Minnesota was given that high seed knowing they’d be upset to boost ratings but let’s not go down that rabbit hole.

Often taboo in the world of making brackets, is making multiple brackets in the same pool. There’s been times where in a pool of about 20 brackets, seven of those belong to one guy. A guy who has “every plausible outcome filled out in each brackets.”

Thanks to upsets like Wisconsin, Michigan, South Carolina, and Xavier there are no perfect brackets left. Out of the millions made this year through ESPN, nobody owns a perfect bracket. This is due in large part to schools such as Duke and Villanova who were favorites to win it all this year see a quick exit in the second round.

March Madness is a cruel and unpredictable event. Upsets and buzzer beaters lurking at every game but if you play your cards right, you just might be able to perfectly pick the round of 32.

Jack Harvey is a staff writer for Dakota Student. He can be reached at [email protected]

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