Written By: Sydney Brown and Tiffany Ngari
April 14, 2019
Despair. Triumph. Joy. Anger. Upsets. Agony. These emotions and more are felt by millions of people as student-athletes compete for a basketball championship. What, you might ask, causes all of these emotions in the same game? Only one thing: March Madness.
March Madness is the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s (NCAA) ultimate basketball showdown from the end of March to the beginning of April where 68 of the best D1 college basketball teams battle to win their trophy. It is a single elimination tournament, so one loss and you’re going back to school. This layout leaves room for underdogs to upset top seeds, which makes for great watching.
March Madness is incredibly popular because everyone can get involved by filling out a bracket where they choose what teams they have winning the games. 70 million people created brackets in 2017, according to ESPN. This year, an estimated $8.5 billion were bet on the tournament, according to CBS. To put these numbers in perspective, 39 million people live in the entire state of California, the most populous state. It’s a pretty big deal.
Texas was well-represented this year with a team in both the men’s (Texas Tech) and women’s (Baylor) finals. Unfortunately, Texas Tech wasn’t able to pull out a win and lost to Virginia 77-85. However, the Baylor Lady Bears beat Notre Dame in a nailbiter 82-81! Go Texas!
March Madness Mad Facts*
- $4 billion dollars of corporate losses due to unproductive workers during March Madness
- It is easier to win back to back lotteries, buying one ticket at a time, than to pick a perfect March Madness bracket
- There is a 24% increase in chicken wing orders during March Madness
*According to WalletHub