Get into the MADNESS

Zach Rever, R2 Op-Ed Editor

March Madness has been canceled due to the Coronavirus… but keep these in mind for next year’s tournament! 

With 4,294,967,296 different bracket combinations, there is no formula or amount of statistical analysis that you can use to successfully predict the outcomes of the 63 games played in the tournament; there has never been a perfect bracket in the history of the NCAA. Nevertheless, many people who fill out brackets have little to no knowledge of any of the teams competing in the tournament; however, filling out brackets and competing with friends can be a fun social experience. 

With that being said, here’s a list of some fun ways to pick brackets that can be created without having any prior knowledge of college basketball and the teams competing in the tournament.

***Disclaimer: If any person making a bracket implements a strategy that I have listed below, they must split the winning prize of 1 billion dollars with me if they are successful in creating the perfect bracket.***

Team colors/Mascots: Picking winning teams based on your favorite combination of teams’ colors or favorite mascot can be a fun way to create a bracket. Picking teams based on mascots has endless possibilities; you can pick winners based on which mascot you think will win in a fight, which mascot is the smallest/biggest, or even which one would make the best pet. As for colors, simply picking your favorite color combination for each match up will provide you with a very aesthetically pleasing bracket.

Geography: Picking teams that are closest to your hometown is a fun way to select teams. You can also use any location as your center point such as your own college, state capitals or even landmarks such as the White House or the Golden Gate Bridge.

Outside Help: If picking the results of games is too complicated, you can use other tools and resources to help. Tools such as random number generators can be useful, or if you’re looking for a more entertaining way to pick winners, using pets can be a good way to complete a bracket by assigning pieces of food to certain teams and whatever treat your pet chooses is the winner of that match up.

Player Superlatives: This method may take a little more work than the others, but by looking at the players on each team, you can determine winners by choosing the team with the smallest/tallest player, or even qualities such as nicest hair or best smile can be used as variables for picking winners.

Statistics: Lastly, using team or player statistics is also a fun way to choose winners, but unlike the others, these require some basketball knowledge. Choosing the winners based on stats such as free throw percentage, points per game, or three-point shot percentage can help you create a bracket that uses basketball and can make you sound smarter when talking about how you picked your bracket.