The first weekend of Basketball Christmas has come and gone. So to fill the time before the next wave of action, how about we check in on the First Annual Anonymous Eagle Bracket Challenge!
There is an old saying that says: "You can't win the Bracket Challenge in the first weekend of the tournament, but you sure as hell can lose it." It turns out that is totally true. It was a rough weekend for a lot of the would be experts in the AE Bracket Challenge. The Big East's tourney wide flameout really put the hurt on this bunch of conference homers. If you invested heavily in Pittsburgh, Louisville, Notre Dame, Georgetown and/or St. John's (and a lot of you did), then you are seriously bumming right now. I should know since I had Pitt in the finals and Louisville in the Final Four. (And in case you're wondering, yes I did check the scenario generator... and no, there is no way I can win now. Thank you for your concern.) So if you are one of the eight people to pick Pitt to win it all, thanks for stopping by the booth. If you had any combination of the aforementioned Big East teams in the Final Four (like me), you can pick up your participation medal at the table next to the juice boxes. And if you were that lonely soul that went out on the limb to pick Purdue to win it all, we applaud your bravery.
There were a few prognosticators that managed to avoid the carnage of Big East homerism that swallowed up so many of us. The leader through the first two three rounds is "PLU LUTES!" with 50 out of the possible 64 points. He is trailed by "Diapers your Dandy" who has 46 points thus far and all of his Final Four teams remaining. "Cory 1" and "boyonthedock" are just behind with 45 points. Personally, now that I'm eliminated, I think I'll be rooting for "Fed Sts Micronesia MU Fan Club" to take this thing home. Basically, because I am really intrigued as to whether or not there is actually an MU fan (let alone an entire club) in the Federated States of Micronesia. God Bless the internet.
There were a few folks who had their homer picks payoff for them. Of the 53 folks in the Bracket Challenge, there were 15 that correctly picked Marquette to make it to the Sweet Sixteen. High fives to all of you! However, no one had the stones to pick them past North Carolina to make the Elite Eight. Where's the faith? Also, Marquette isn't the only school with some unabashed homers in the crowd. There were two people who picked the evil Wisconsin Badgers to make the Final Four.
Last but not least: a tip of the cap to Brewtown Andy, who was the only member of the Challenge to correctly pick Morehead St. over Louisville. Well played sir.
Good luck to everyone going forward (except those two people that picked the Badgers, of course). I know my fellow eliminees and I will be watching closely, and hoping for upsets galore to blow everyone else's brackets to smithereens like ours... Especially that 11 over 2 upset next Friday night!