What is March Madness? Explaining MSU Basketball

Sports! Americans love their sports and since football has finished, basketball has taken over. One popular activity that many Americans participate in – sport-lovers or not – is March Madness.

March Madness happens the whole month of March and is when Americans choose the teams they think will win the NCAA championship. There are 67 games that will be played between 68 college basketball teams from around the USA, split into four different regions: East, Southwest, West and Southeast. The winners will go onto the next round and continue to go until there are two teams left and then they battle for championship. There are 7 rounds: First round, Second round, Third round, NCAA Sweet 16, Elite 8, Final 4 and the Championship.

The NCAA chooses which teams will play in the initial round and place them on a bracket. Americans print off these brackets and write down how they perceive the games will go. Many compete with friends or on their dorm floor. I remember on my floor sophomore year, we had a big sheet with the predictions of people from the floor and the points they gained. The one with the most points at the end won a prize (and bragging rights).

March Madness began in 1939 and Michigan State has won twice and been in the final four 8 times. UCLA has had 11 wins, more than any other team. This year the selection will be made on March 11 and tournament begins on March 13 and 14th. The final will be played on April 2 in New Orleans.

Be sure to grab some friends, fill out a bracket, and watch the games! This is a great part of American culture in the spring and is truly a lot of fun, whether you win or lose! – Anna Graziano

What is all this talk about “seeds”? What does it mean that MSU is the #1 Seed?

Being a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament carries a lot of prestige and pride for a programs fan base. There are four No. 1 seeds in the tournament and these four teams are typically regarded as the favorites to win the National Championship.“It was just a great feeling to see that No. 1 seed pop up,” Michigan State forward Draymond Green said.

Under Head Coach Tom Izzo the Michigan State Spartans have earned four No. 1 seeds, the three other times were from 1999-2001. It is worth noting that the last three times the Spartans were a No. 1 seed they reached the Final Four, and won the National Championship in 2000 (a goal for all college basketball players and fans). Going off of recent history, this year’s tournament looks promising for the Spartans. However, nothing is guaranteed in the NCAA Tournament and nothing less than a total team effort will be needed for the Spartans to make their fourth Final Four as a No. 1 seed. GO GREEN!

– Michael Snyder

Contributing to the Student Perspective on March Madness are Anna Graziano and Michael Snyder.

Michael Snyder is a Senior at MSU studying Elementary Education. Mike is in his fourth year working at OISS as a student worker and is a mentor for our Front Desk Staff. Mike says: “I Love working at OISS as well as being a full-time Spartan fan. So if you see me, say ‘hi’.”

Anna is a fourth-year undergraduate student who was born in Kansas and has lived in Brazil, South Africa, Japan and around the United States. She is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Comparative Cultures and Politics at MSU’s James Madison College with minors in Portuguese and Educational Studies. Her interests vary from African culture to refugee services. Anna serves as a Programming Intern at OISS. 

Photo Credit: http://www.midwestsportsfans.com

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