Thanks to surprise runs by teams like No. 7 seed University of South Carolina, the 2017 NCAA March Madness Tournament has been a tough bracket to nail.
This year, like many others before it, has even witnessed the most knowledgeable college basketball analysts fall short of an office pool leader who has yet to watch a second of this season’s action when it comes to picking the best bracket.
In response, The Badger Herald sports section reached out to its own Top 5 participants from paper’s very own Badger Herald Bracket Challenge via ESPN Tournament Challenge and asked them to share their “expert bracketologist” advice.
Current fifth-place participant, bkpatel, weighed in on his secrets to landing his bracket in the Top 5 in a group of nearly 100 participants.
“I was sitting there one night with a few darts and a sharpie,” bkpatel said. “It’s a dog eat dog world, you know?”
Sports section correspondents from The Badger Herald did not comprehend the bracket genius’ above statement, just for the record.
“I’m all the way up right now, I’m just blazing this tournament picking game thing,” bkpatel humbly shared. “I might actually be a March Madness prophet, because I had a vision that I would be here come the Final Four.”
Perhaps, what is most remarkable about bkpatel’s bracket is the fact that he chose No. 6 seed Southern Methodist University to run the table and take the NCAA Tournament title.
Why is that a big deal? The Mustangs lost their first game in an upset to No. 11 seed USC. Yet, his bracket is still sitting fifth overall among brackets with North Carolina or Gonzaga as the national champions.
“From what I saw, which was about six minutes of one game all season, they [SMU] were the most explosive team in the league,” bkpatel said. “I thought SMU was playing with a chip on their shoulder, but they blew it.”
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The perplexing bracket genius also explained the reasoning behind his Wisconsin upset pick over No. 1 overall seed Villanova.
“I picked Wisconsin over Villanova solely based on my love for cheese and sausage,” bkpatel said. “You have to go with your gut feeling, especially when it comes to wieners.”
When asked if he could name his Final Four selections off the top of his head, he chuckled then paused before scraping together an response.
“Probably not,” bkpatel said. “Gonzaga? Is that one? Oregon, SMU, and I can’t give you the fourth one.”
A bizarre formula for success to say the least, but a formula for success at the end of the day with results to match.