The Drunk Bracket Challenge, and Other Weird Sh*t

The Drunk Bracket Challenge

I have a plan. Next year, I will fill out two brackets. This goes against everything I stand for. I usually only fill out one bracket. I don’t have the time or the desire to select the winners of 64 NCAA Tournament games more than once. One bracket entered into multiple pools. That’s how it works for me. Which is why this is so unprecedented.

My plan has a lasting impact, however. I really feel like it could be a game-changer. Two brackets: one filled out while sober, one filled out while absolutely hammered. I’m not talking buzzed or tipsy. Hammered. The kind of drunk you get when you start grabbing body parts and making ridiculously bad jokes. That kind of drunk.

Not only that, I want to gather all my friends, hunker down in a residence for the evening, then debate our drunken selections while we make our picks. We will film the event so that we can remember it all and have recorded evidence of the justification behind every single pick we make. Why Morehead State? Because in our current state, we’d enjoy more head. Stupid stuff like that.

Now I know what you’re thinking. This could be really bad. The video evidence, especially, could be absolutely incriminating. But really, how else are we supposed to have a winning bracket unless we throw all our inhibitions out the window and just wing it? That’s how it’s done, right? Taking educated stabs at logical predictions never, ever works out. You have to be a little crazy to win a major bracket pool. Or in our case, a little tanked. It makes sense. Just wait. One year from now, you’ll see.

The Ugly Cry is played out

Standard operating procedure for powerhouse teams losing in this year’s tournament is to cry. And not just cry, but absolutely bawl like little children in front of millions of viewers before the game has even come to an end. We’ve already seen it happen with Duke and Kansas, to name two, and frankly I don’t get it.

Look, I’m not gonna lie to you. I’ve cried in my day. I don’t make a point of it. It’s not something I try to do. But sometimes you can’t always fight the tears. That said, when I do cry, I do my very best to not cry ugly. It’s just like smiling in a photo or trying not to look overly giddy when a girl you’re into says yes, she’ll go out with you. It takes a little bit of effort, but the results are worth it. Looking your best in even the worst situations takes a combination of practice and skill. That’s something that elite college athletes should have a level of familiarity with. But alas, when it comes to crying, they possess none of that.

Watching Duke’s Nolan Smith quiver, pout, scrunch his face up, then open the floodgates is more laughable than lamentable. Even though most of us can empathize with the loss, it’s hard to feel bad for someone who looks that goofy when they sob. And it’s not like Smith is the only one. There are plenty of others out there.

I understand the desire to win. I understand the sadness surrounding the end of your college career. But save it for the locker room. Save it for the plane ride home. Save it for a private place where you can weep as openly and as gruesomely as you’d like. You’re a top-tier college basketball player. Girls want to attach themselves to your genitals. Guys want to be you. There’s a good chance you will make a lot of money one day based solely on the fact that people know who you are. No one feels sorry for you right now. And you’re embarrassing yourself on national television.

Look, you made the NCAA Tournament. That’s a hell of an achievement. But you know what? As soon as you entered this tournament, you stood a 63-in-64 chance of being disappointed. There was a 1.5625-percent chance that you would not be disappointed. So the odds were definitely not in your favor. You could have prepared for this ugly cry long ago. And you did not. That’s your bad. Grow a pair.

The entire Commonwealth of Virginia is celebrating

Suck it, Tony Bennett. You’re the coach of the worst basketball program in the state of Virginia. Or should I say, the Commonwealth of Virginia.

VCU is absolutely destroying people. They are the S.A.R.S. of college basketball right now. We don’t really know what they are. We don’t really know how they came to be this powerful. We don’t really know how to stop them. We don’t really have a cure for this madness. All we know is that they are destructive as sh*t and taking out everyone and everything in their path. I wouldn’t fault Butler for wearing S.A.R.S. masks during the Final Four. Probably a wise decision.

And what’s up with their coach? Shaka Smart. This man has a porn star name and yet he’s as good as they come. He’s thirty-three years of age, too. Jeebus. This only gives me seven years to make something of myself. That’s a lot of pressure. How many American males out there feel inferior today because of the successes of Shaka Smart? Millions. And rightfully so. Smart is like Brad Stevens for the common man. And if you’re wondering why Stevens isn’t the Brad Stevens for the common man, it’s because of the glasses. Sure, lots of us (myself included) have vision deficiencies. But by wearing the glasses, you’re declaring yourself to be better than the common man. That’s Brad Stevens. He’s too good for us. Which is why Shaka Smart wins.

My advice to Smart is this: don’t leave VCU for at least one more year. Coaches always make the mistake of taking the bait after their first one-night stand with success. It’s like telling someone you love them after one date. You just don’t do that. Even if you’re feeling that way, you don’t do it. And that’s why Smart needs to stick around the Commonwealth for a little longer. The jobs he’ll be offered this offseason will pay more and have more recruiting potential, but ultimately they’ll suck. They’ll be the bottom of the barrel in major conferences. The DePauls of the world, the Mississippi States. Ugh. Take a lesson from Dan Monson and don’t bail on your team for a little while. It’s not worth it.

Speaking of VCU…

This is VCU’s point guard Joey Rodriguez:

This is my friend, Jan:

As you can see, they are the same person.

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