If you haven't made your March Madness bracket picks yet, you'd better hurry -- the first game tips off later this morning.â†µâ†µ
Many people pick not with their head, but with their heart. You know, you're the person who loves Notre Dame and thinks they can do no wrong and can't possibly pick against them. Or you hate, hate, hate Ohio State and want them upset in the first round.â†µâ†µ
The Wall Street Journal -- not exactly the place you'd think to go first for sports information -- can help. On their website, they have set up "Blindfold Brackets", which lists all the teams by their characteristics, both positive and negative, but identifies them only by code names, and only gives the seeding within two places. Thus, if you have a favorite, you might recognize them -- or maybe not; you pick a matchup winner based on what the team does, not whether you like its colors, or whether you went to the school, or if it's from your home state.â†µâ†µ
Going through this process last night, I wound up picking Ohio State -- one of the favorites to win the whole thing -- to be upset in its second game by George Mason. George Mason had a storybook run to the Final Four in 2006, and I wound up picking them to go there again. But the other three brackets came out pretty close to "form"; the blindfold bracket had me picking a No. 1 vs. No. 2 in the regional final in two of the other three, and a No. 2 vs. a No. 4 in the other. I managed to sprinkle in a handful of upsets, though I doubt that Long Island will really defeat North Carolina, nor will Oakland likely beat Texas (and is that a NCAA matchup, or spring training baseball?).â†µâ†µ
I've got a No. 1, No. 2, No. 4 and No. 8 seed in the Final Four, which is within thr realm of realism, and Wisconsin winning the title. That's not real likely, but neither is it impossible. Go check it out. You've only got a couple of hours. If you'd like a printable bracket to help you out, the mothership at SBNation.com has one at this link.