On Tuesday, the NCAA made one of the stupider announcements that they’ll ever make. Here’s the wording, straight from the press release:
The NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship Sport Committee announced that it will reveal the top-16 teams in seed order three times during the months of January and February, 2017.
Mary, Queen of Heart Medication, pray for me.
When the College Football Playoff was created, along with it came a largely stupid television show on ESPN. Over the last few weeks of the college football season, ESPN gets to announce the Playoff Committee’s top 25 teams. In essence, the committee announces every week who would be in the four team playoff on a week by week basis as well as the next 21 losers who aren’t. Then, the next week, they just throw that thing out and start over. It’s incredibly dumb because you can get teams leapfrogging their way in for no apparent reason and each weekly announcement has zip-all to do with the end of season announcement. It’s a dog and pony show at best and a cheap ploy for ratings and money at worst.
Last year, some genius at the NCAA and decided to start doing this for women’s basketball. They announced the top 10 teams for the national championship tournament field as the season started approaching its end point. It is very obvious what this was: a test program to gauge interest in doing this kind of thing for men’s basketball in the future. **hits NCAA in the nose with a rolled up newspaper** NO, NCAA. THAT IS A BAD NCAA.
This year, they’re doubling down on their stupidity by expanding it to the top 16 teams. When I say “they,” I actually mean Terry Gawlik, Senior Associate Athletic Director at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
“The committee felt that the top-10 announcements were very successful last year in raising awareness and creating conversation around the game,” said Terry Gawlik, chair of the Division I Women’s Basketball Championship Sport Committee and senior associate athletic director at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. “We wanted to continue that this season with the addition of increasing the reveal to include the top-16 seeds.”
I should have known that the Badgers were behind ruining something nice.
At least college football has the decency to run this thing out every week right up until the announcement of the official playoff bracket. Here’s what the NCAA is going to do: Three announcements on ESPN2 of the top 16 seeds, one on January 23, one on February 6, and one on February 20. It’s not even a weekly thing, it’s every other week. Then, they’re going to go radio silent for three weeks before the official bracket is released on March 13.
Here’s the worst part. Are you ready for the worst part? Because it’s going to blow your mind.
The three February announcements will have no bearing on the final bracket that will be revealed on Selection Monday, March 13 at 7 p.m. Eastern time on ESPN.
“Hey, y’all. We’re gonna have ESPN2 announce the top 16 seeds on three Mondays in January and February. Then, and get this — We’re gonna chuck that 16 team list in the damn trash and ignore it when we assemble the 64 team field in March. Doesn’t that sound like fun?”
NO, IT DOESN’T, ACTUALLY.
Look, NCAA. I know you’re trying to increase market awareness or raise the Q rating of basketball or some other stupid nonsense. Remember back in March when you decided that having a two hour long men’s basketball selection show was a good plan and then you formatted it poorly by spreading the announcements across the full two hours and the internet exploded and you were forced to leak the bracket (and don’t tell me you didn’t do that) in order to get everyone to stop burying the incredibly and stupidly long show that went on forever?
SAME DEAL HERE, DOORKNOBS. Stop ruining something that works just fine the way it was. Or, to put it colloquially: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
We all know you have nothing to do with the College Football Playoff and its money, so stop stealing their stupid ideas. Knock it off with these fake bracket reveals that have nothing to do with the actual bracket, and whatever you do, do not even think about expanding this nonsense to the men’s side of the aisle.