The Student News Site of Malvern Preparatory School

Friar's Lantern

The Student News Site of Malvern Preparatory School

Friar's Lantern

The Student News Site of Malvern Preparatory School

Friar's Lantern

The madness of March

50b5a1209beef.preview-620As March Madness looms, here is a look at what makes this month the maddest of them all.

As we enter into the spring season, some people look forward to the warmer weather. Others look forward to spring break. However, the buzz at Malvern every year is the apprehension surrounding March Madness and the dream of the perfect bracket.

March Madness began in Illinois as a small tournament in1908. By the year 1930, over 900 schools were involved, and the notoriety and passion has only intensified.

Today, many sports websites have made the tournament fun for all by providing brackets to fill out. The fun in the bracket is to make your predictions as to how the tournament will shape up. In 2011, over 5.9 million brackets were filled out on ESPN’s tournament challenge, including President Obama. However, what is the more interesting number series is the chance of getting a perfect bracket. Assuming that you pick each game as a 50/50 chance, your chances of getting a perfect bracket are 1 in 267. If you have a decent understanding of exponents, you would realize the seemingly infinite properties that this number represents.

But, let’s say you are a student of the game of bracketology and you pick the winner of each game 75% of the time. You would think your chances of that perfect bracket would be a lot better, right? Nope! Your chances of picking a perfect bracket with a 75% chance of getting the pick right are 1 in 234 million.

Not to worry though, you are not alone if your bracket is basically torn to shreds. After the round of 64, there was only one perfect bracket remaining. He lost his perfection the very next game after Oregon lost to Wisconsin.

As much as we would like to think, this tournament is not just about the fans. We saw some local teams make appearances in the big dance. Villanova received an impressive #2 seed in the East region, however they came up short against a tough Connecticut team in the second round. Joining Villanova in the East was St. Joe’s, who returned to the big dance for the first time since their perfect regular season during the stretch of 2003-2004. They too, however, lost to Connecticut in the first round. Also in the east region was Delaware, who punched their ticket for the first time in the school’s history. They, however, had the toughest matchup of all the local teams, losing to Michigan State.

However, with the numerous upsets that have occurred so far, it would not have shocked me to see Delaware beat Michigan State. Dayton, an 11 seed, upset not one, but two teams on their road to the sweet sixteen. Ohio State and Syracuse could not hold off the Dayton Flyers and their multiple scoring threats. Also, Mercer ousted Duke in a thriller. In fact, the game was so close that Coach K of Duke entered the Mercer locker room to congratulate the Mercer organization on a well-played game. Coach K remarked, “If we were to get beaten, I’m glad we were beaten by a hell of a basketball team.” North Dakota State, Stephen F. Austin, Stanford, and Harvard all had first round upset-wins so far.  In the second round, Stanford upset Kansas and Kentucky upset the Wichita State shockers, ruining their perfect season.

Needless to say, the madness of March is well underway.

Cartoon by Ricky Walsh '14
Cartoon by Ricky Walsh ’14
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