Perfection Sunday

It’s that time of year. Colby winter sports have wrapped up, the season’s athletes have retired to their respective dorms, and our fair Miller steps are preparing for an onslaught of goldfish-puking idiots in a few days. But there is another event this weekend that will dictate the entertainment for hundreds of people around our beautiful Mayflower Hill for the next couple of weeks: Selection Sunday!

Yes! Selection Sunday (or the day where the NCAA tournament bracket is constructed by a tournament committee) is just around the corner. March Madness is almost here! College Basketball holds, by far, the best and most entertaining playoff system every year because of the sheer number of teams, pure unpredictability of team’s performances, amazing gambling prospects, and mathmatic impossibility of a perfect bracket that millions upon millions of people (including myself) challenge every year with the simple phrase “I’ll get it perfect this year.”

Will there be a perfect bracket picked this year? Doubt it. Nobody can predict every Colby-sized school’s run to the Elite Eight. Nobody can see the power-conference school that massively disappoints its fans, claiming “this is the year.” Nobody can pick every eight nine seed and seven ten seed matchup effectively. You’re all going to try it. You’re all going to fail. I’m going to try it. I’m going to fail.

But that’s why March Madness is so great. It’s still, somehow, possible for me to pick perfection, even with the tons of storylines leading up to this year’s tournament. Duke flip-flops between contender and pretender. The team with the most talented player in the country, LSU with Ben Simmons, probably won’t even make the tournament. A quick look over at the Pac-12 Conference finds nearly eight tournament-worthy teams. Villanova and Kansas once again look like title teams even though they disappoint in March every year, and small schools with hero players eying upsets over every large school that passed up on recruiting them have yet to be discovered. I could research for hours and still be so unsure about who will be the only team to not lose in March Madness.

Even if I pick the first day completely right by pure chance, I’m going to lose some stupid game the next day because Kentucky decided not to show up against the University of Southern who-knows-where. Then, after the first weekend, some schmuck will be completely perfect and get all the national television attention. At which point he or she will say “I don’t know I just picked my teams based on color scheme and right now I’m perfect.” Then, he or she will assert that they predict perfection for the rest of their bracket and they will become world famous billionaires who made history. They’ll lose the next weekend. Goddamn it.

What’s not to love about this insanity? Every game is a must-win, a 16 seed may beat a one seed, the jingle between commercials is the best in the business, and, in the end, only one winner cuts down the net at the end of it all to the famous “one shining moment.” We see future NBA players searching for glory, coaching giants sweat and swear at referees, and spectacular buzzer-beaters. We see bracket pools of Colby students leading to trash talk, tears, and cheers. We see furious flip-flopping of channels to catch every monumental moment. But, most of all, we see the madness that is the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship. Get your pens ready. It begins this Sunday. Doghead to March Madness to Spring Break? Life is great.