Elle (Monponsett's babysitter) is in the house!
Stacey's off defending the oppressed, so it falls to me to create and promote our new interactive feature here at the National Sports part of the Cape Cod Today Experience (Stacey writes for www.capecodtoday.com) ..... an official NCAA March Madness Game that you- yes, YOU- can play.
www.ESPN.com will do all the scoring for us, and they don't spam you that often. UMassj at Yahoo is the man for this idea, but I am more familiar/can explain better with the ESPN format.
First... you go to this link:
Like most sites, you have to log in/sign up, but I don't recall ESPN being that big of a pain in the ass.
Once you're in, you'll be presented with a bracket. Fill these out (for each of the 4 conferences). You click on whatever team you think will win the game. They provide scouting reports, from both one paragraph briefs to ones that are so deep that God himself might not have time to read them all.
In the first round, I chose about 16 teams by reputation, 5 by actually comparing the scouting reports, and 11 Wild Guesses. Wild Guess then began to take a substantial lead in the later rounds. You can do 32 wild guesses. They will be as good as mine. Follow the tournament through the championship game.
Once you're done, you can put your team into a league. Click this link:
... and then join. You can go back to this same page to check out how you fare against the others.
YOU HAVE TO FILL OUT YOUR BRACKETS BY EARLY THURSDAY!!!
Now, I know what you're thinking.... "There's no way that my inferior intellect can match wits with Baby Magic's bad-ass mental acumen." Granted, that will be a concern.
If you don't want to lose to a girl, you have bigger problems than losing to a girl... so play. As I wrote this, both Stacey and the Colonel told me of NCAA pools they were in that were won by A) a lesbian English teacher who literally took her bracket and checked it off in 7 seconds, possibly without looking at it, and B) a guy in the hospital who had taken sharpnel to the head, and was thus left in a sort of near-constant mental fog.
The NCAA tournament (which I should probably have mentioned by now is the men's college basketball playoffs) isn't called the Madness because they want to encourage more Ron Artest-style brawls. No, they call it the Madness because it defies comprehension.
There were about a zillion reasons why Apollo should have beaten Rocky. Rocky was white, washed up, untested against major competition, wasn't the brightest bulb in the tree, had just been dumped by his manager, had endured savage punishment in hundreds of low-rent bloodbaths, had possible mob connections, appeared to be constantly punch-drunk, and was fighting a character who was supposed to be this ultradominant heavyweight champ who was named after a God.
But Rocky believes in himself, you see. He gets up, drinks raw eggs, runs a marathon, batters sides of beef until his hands are bloody and raw, does one armed pushups and chases chickens around. His manager is older than the old school, and he teaches him everything he knows. The city adopts him as their own. Rocky has even fallen in love.
He enters the fight as a David/Goliath underdog, and then wins an Old Testament style battle against a gallant and worthy anti-villain. Black embraces white, love conquers all, a man is redeemed, and grown men weep.
That exact scenario (translated to college basketball) will go down about 16 times this weekend. There's 32 games happening. You have to guess which is which, in a tournament that has a history of making Fools out of far greater prognosticators than you or I.
Logic would dictate that the more serious fans would hold the advantage here. But the Rocky thing happens just enough so that Your guess is as good as Mine when it comes to predicting these games. Bring in Dick Vitale, who has covered the sport for a living since well before I was born, and your guess is still going to be as good as his. It's called Anti Logic, and I'm trying to secure the patent.
Besides.. I think Rocky actually lost that fight. I've never actually heard the announcement of the decision in the movie, because everybody is laughing at/impersonating that mongoloid yell he does at the end.