March Madness 2013

Basketball on the Hardwood

Insanity. Frenzy. Intense Enthusiasm. These are just a few words to describe the madness that is March Madness, the annual NCAA basketball tournament that determines the national champion of college basketball.  Now I’m not a basketball fan, far from it, but I find myself getting caught up in this frenzy every year, meeting friends to cheer on the favorite team, feeling the pain of upset for the losing team and betting on who will go all the way to the end.  I will never forget watching Gonzaga lose their storybook season in the last seconds of the game and their team crying on the court.  What I never seem to grasp is what is a pod and which seed do they belong to, so here are some quick tips to keep up.

  1. March Madness is also known as The Tournament, The Big Dance or The Road to the Final Four.
  2. The madness begins with 64 teams divided into four regions.  Each region has teams that are assigned to a seed, 1 through 16, with the best teams in the region awarded the number 1 seed.
  3. Pods refer to the method of grouping seeds.  One pod includes seeds 1, 16, 8 and 9. A second pod includes seeds 4, 13, 5, 12. The third pod includes seeds 2, 15, 7 and 10. And finally, the fourth pod includes seeds 3, 14, 6 and 11.
  4. The lower seeds represent potential “Cinderellas.” A Cinderella team is one that unexpectedly achieves success in the bracket by beating higher-seeded teams.
  5. Sweet, Elite and Final Four. The first two days of the tournament, the field of 64 is cut down to 32, and then to 16.  The final sixteen are referred to as the Sweet 16. During the second week, the field is then trimmed to the Elite 8 and then to the Final Four.

So this year, with this new knowledge in hand, gather with friends, put out some eats and cheer for your favorite teams on The Road to the Final Four!