March Madness sweeps nation

julia kuhn, bear facts features writer

For college basketball fans, springtime means March Madness. The NCAA tournament consists of 68 teams playing in a one-and-done tournament and fans compete against one another by making brackets, or predictions of which teams will win. 

“I get really excited for March Madness because I love making a bracket and competing with all my friends,” Steven Gore, sophomore, said. “It’s fun to watch the games with friends. Me and my friends root for different teams based on who we have winning in our brackets. There’s is a competitiveness to the tournament even for fans, which is kind of funny, but adds to the excitement of it, I think.” 

The term bracket refers to a chart with all the teams on it, and people pick who they think will win for each game, from the first round to the championship. Gore and his friends, like many others, compete against each other every year to see who correctly picks the most winners.

“I won my bracket pool last year, and I’m hoping I can win again,” Gore said. “I don’t really have a set strategy, I just pick who I think will win. I don’t always pick the upset, but you always have to pick a few good upsets every year. This year the biggest upset I picked is Oregon beating Oklahoma State, which would be a 12 seed beating a 5 seed, which is a pretty big upset.”

Gore said that while he supports state teams, he does not let his feelings affect his bracket picks.

“My favorite team in the tournament is Illinois, because they are representing our home state. But I chose Indiana for my champion because they have the easiest bracket, I think they’re a good team, and I think they’ll win. Even though I’m rooting for Illinois, I can’t see them going very far in the tournament,” Gore said.

Although the competitiveness of March Madness brings excitement to basketball teams and fans, at the end of the day, Gore said his favorite part has less to do with the competition and more to do with enjoying the games with friends.

“I love making brackets,” Gore said, “but my favorite part of the tournament is getting to watch all the games together with my friends.”