NCAA Tournament Expansion: March Madness’er
There are very few things in life that are perfect; the combination of peanut butter and chocolate in a Reese’s, J-Lo’s backside, and the NCAA College Basketball Tournament.
Currently March Madness is 65 teams selected by a College Basketball committee (number crunching dorks). They have one play-in game, which only degenerate gamblers watch.
People have recently started talking about expanding the tournament to 68 teams and adding four play-in games. Great, so now Long Beach Community College can play ITT Tech and the winner goes dancing. Yeah!
If increasing to 68 isn’t enough, they have also thrown around the idea of expanding to a 96 team field.
It sounds like there are people who are on both sides of the argument, which side is right? Could this create more Cinderella stories in the tournament? When does March Madness become to mad?
Participation Awards Are For Charity Workers
It wouldn’t be such a big deal if they only expanded to 68 teams. They add four games for teams with players that otherwise might never participate in the NCAA Tournament and most likely won’t play in the NBA.
What is the deal with our current society wanting everybody to get a chance to participate in sports?
In little league kids get participation trophies, which I think is stupid. We are sending a bad message, that if you try even though you suck, you can still receive an award.
Same goes for college athletes by rewarding there mediocrity. These are men getting ready to join the real world, where employers don’t give participation ribbons. Besides, a free education isn’t enough?
Bumping it up to 68 won’t ruin the tournament, but its not going to add anything.
The Dance Floor Is Crowded
When asked about expansion Texas Tech Coach Pat Knight said, “If you’re talking about adding more teams, I don’t think the games would change a bit.”
What Coach Knight is saying, is those teams that get added will still get stomped by 20 or 30 points by the number one seeds.
The idea of a 96 team tournament is like waking up on December 25th and finding out Christmas isn’t for another week. The 96 team field takes away from the honor that teams like George Mason and Davidson received from going to the “Big Dance”.
I saw a stat that said 68 of 120 teams get into the college football playoffs, or 56 percent. That could be the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard, college football doesn’t even have a playoff system. They have 33 glorified exhibition games and one game that a computer says should be the National Championship Game.
Having such a large field will make ‘must win’ regular season games almost non existent and take away drama from the early stage of the tournament. More isn’t always better, ask the suburban hockey mom who traded her B’s for D’s, she now suffers from back pain and scoliosis.
Currently Its All About Currency
Greed is often the route of destruction. If I really thought that increasing the tournament size was driven by the right motives, then I wouldn’t be so against it. It’s not about letting some kids play in meaningful games or additional intensity for fans, it’s about money.
The NCAA realizes an opportunity to increase revenue by adding to one of the most anticipated events of the year. The people who make this decision will be the winners by padding university bank rolls, but the kids and fans will be the losers because they become sacrificial ponds for generating more money.
The one group besides the bubble teams of March Madness that wins, is Vegas. They have to be “happier than a sailor on leave” with the idea of more games to bet on.
If Hailey Berry were to get a nose job, it would be selfish. Why take something so beautiful and try to make it better, this also applies to the NCAA Tournament.
March Madness should expand because the field is too competitive, currently this is not the case, it might even be better off with a retraction.