Upsets in March Madness


Workers install a basketball court at U.S. Bank Stadium on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018, where the Vikings’ venue will hold its first basketball games. The court has been borrowed from the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls, S.D. The Gophers are scheduled to play Oklahoma State there at 9 p.m. Friday night. (Courtesy of SMG / U.S. Bank Stadium)

Ethan Dicken, Junior Sports Editor

March, a month that that marks the end of winter and the start of spring; it also marks the start for the final stretch in school before summer. This month represents the craziest sports tournament in the world. This tournament consists of 68 college basketball teams fighting to prove they are the best team in college basketball. The world has their eyes set on this one event,where every team believes they have a chance to go all the way. Underdogs beating top teams is an everyday occasion.It could be considered unusual if you didn’t have crazy upsets within this tournament. That is the very reason why March becomes madness.
The tournament got the slogan “March Madness” because It traces back here to Illinois in a statewide high school basketball tournament that began in 1908. In the year 1939, an official with the Illinois High School Association named Henry V. Porter wrote an article titled “March Madness”. “A little March madness may complement and contribute to sanity and help keep society on an even keel.” he said.
The phrase was only attached to Illinois high-school ball until 1982,when CBS broadcaster Brent Musburger, used it during his network’s NCAA tournament coverage. Meanwhile, IHSA trademarked the phrase in 1989. However, NCAA and IHSA fought over the phrase in 1996. The NCAA argued saying it had a common law trademark on the phrase and was allowed to license the phrase. The 2 sides went to court and the 7th Circuit was on the NCAA’s side. The ruling by the court was very unclear and allowed for future litigations to continue. Both sides later agreed to create a March Madness Athletic Association which was a joint holding company. This agreement meant the IHSA could use the name on the high school basketball level and the NCAA could use the phrase in connection to its collegiate tournament. Henceforth that is how the phrase came to be.
People to this day are still captivated by this tournament which is in large part due to the upsets. You never know when the upsets are going to come and who is going to lose. The tournament is also extremely entertaining because of the March Madness brackets. People watching the tournament annually make a bracket for who they think will match ups and ultimately win it all. Your bracket could either be really good or horrible like so many others.
The perfect bracket is pretty much a myth: no one has ever achieved this yet. The odds of meeting this goal is 1 in 9.2 quintillion. You have a better chance of getting struck by lightning. You are lucky to get out of the first 2 days of the tournament without busting your bracket. This is due to all the upsets that happen and why it’s so hard to pull off the impossible. You never know who is going to rise to the occasion and succeed or shrivel up and lose. When filling out your bracket you almost have to guarantee an underdog will pull off a couple upsets and make a run for glory in the tournament.
Upsets in March Madness have been happening for decades in the college basketball universe. Some of the greatest upsets have come in the last 30 years. In 1985, Villanova was ranked the 8th seed and was the lowest seed to ever win the National Championship. The wildcats didn’t win any of their first 3 March Madness games by more than 5 points. They team clawed their way to the National Championship. Another big run by a Cinderella team was a year later in the LSU Tigers. LSU was ranked 11th and beat a 1,2, and 3 seed in the same tournament, they are still the only team to do that. They knocked off Memphis State, Georgia Tech, and Kentucky, in that order. They won those games by less than an average of 4 points per game. The greatest upset in March Madness happened last year. When an improbable 16 seed in UMBC beat the 1 seed Virginia in the first round of the tournament. Before this upset 16 seeds were 0-135 against 1 seeds. UMBC beat Virginia 74-54, the whole sports world couldn’t believe what they witnessed in that game. Brackets were busted just from that game alone, some people had Virginia winning it all that year. All the upsets in March Madness is why people tend to love watching and filling out brackets so much. This year should give us the same, if not more madness like in the past. Expect the same fight from every team no matter what seed they are. Every game is a battle, once the game starts the seed is just a number and what you do on the court will determine if you get to go onto the next battle. The final 4 teams every year go to a predetermined venue, and this year it’s in US Bank Stadium home to the Minnesota Vikings. Expect the same electricity in US Bank Stadium, expect the same team spirit for the final four teams. Get ready for the buzzer beaters,get ready for the upsets. The only thing you can really expect in this March Madness tournament is the unexpected.