5 nonsensical ways to fill out your bracket


by Brock Borgeson, Sports Editor

If madness is reserved for March basketball, imagine how ludicrous this year’s NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament will be after the regular season.

Seventy-four times, top-10 teams lost this year, the most since the Associated Press started the Top 25 poll in 1948. No. 1 teams lost seven games, and it seemed like the Big 12 and Big 10 played a game of hot potato with the top spot in the conference.

That being said, using reason to select your 2016 bracket seems a bit foolish. So why not match the crazy basketball season with your own outlandish selections using these strategies.

Beware for the one-month diehard basketball fans, too.

1. Let the best mascot win

Every casual group that watches a major sporting event has the person who reduces their pick to win down to whoever has the most powerful, cunning or cool mascot. If that’s your criteria, here’s who should win. From Mocs, to Governors, Seawolves and Lumberjacks, the field is pretty diverse this year. The selection process is subjective, but here’s the final four for this category.

South Region: Wichita State Wheat Shockers –

Perfect microcosm of the state of Kansas…and a frightening mascot.

West Region: UW – Green Bay Phoenix –

The last thing I think of when I envision Green Bay is a Phoenix, but it is an encouraging mythological figure when it’s -30 degrees below in January.

East Region: Chattanooga Mocs –

Apparently this refers to a mockingbird, not to be confused for moccasins that are taking the casual clothing world by storm.

Midwest Region: Dayton Flyers –

Can’t think of a better name to pay homage to the Wright Brothers or high-flying basketball.

2. Most famous alumni

Famous criminals, athletes, innovators, actors and politicians all made the field for this category, but I don’t think there is much arguing about these four.

South Region: Miami – “The Rock”

Just follow him on Twitter or Instagram and you’ll understand.

West Region: Oregon – Phil Knight

The founder of Nike. My wardrobe would be reduced to burlap if it weren’t for Phil.

East Region: Notre Dame – Regis Philbin

“Is that your final answer?”

Midwest Region: Purdue – Neil Armstrong

“One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

3. Best basketball alumni:

This section is devoted to the days when 18-year-olds or “one and dones” didn’t dominate the Association.

South Region: Kansas – Wilt Chamberlain

Only NBA player to ever score triple digits in a game. One-hundy.

West Region: Cincinnati – Oscar Robertson

You know you’ve made it when you’re referred to by your first name. He’s known by one letter: Big O.

East Region: North Carolina – Michael Jordan

No explanation needed here. Air Jordan.

Midwest Region: Michigan State – Magic Johnson

The man who made March “mad.” Plus, people don’t even know his real name is Earvin.

When all else fails. Either this or ask your goldfish.

4. Better football team

Let’s face it, we live in a football crazed nation. This is for the fans who are sports fans for one day a week between September and February.

South Region: Miami

At one point and time they were the mecca of college football. And football players who majored in illegal activities.

West Region: Oregon

Kansas football doesn’t get new jerseys every weekend for a reason. Wait, Kansas has football?

East Region: Michigan

Their head coach has sleepovers with his recruits and plays flag football at instructional camps. Who wouldn’t want to play here?

Midwest Region: Michigan State

Let’s just not have them play an SEC school in a bowl game…other than that they’re good!

5. Best place to vacation

These are the schools that instill fear in parents of students all across the nation. Will my child actually study, or will they major in surfing, beach volleyball and suntans?

South Region: Hawaii

According to an article in the USA Today, “To live comfortably in Hawaii, you’d need a salary of over $122,000.” This doesn’t happen if you live in Brookings, South Dakota. Sorry South Dakota State University.

West Region: UNC-Wilmington

This region was pretty weak in this category. Cedar Falls, Iowa, Green Bay and Norman, Oklahoma were all competitors. The Seahawks win by default.

East Region: Florida Gulf Coast University

The graduation rate for FGCU students in 2013 was 27 percent…this isn’t Harvard folks.

Midwest Region: Fresno State University

The seventh sunniest city in the US and second sunniest in California at 79 percent of days being sunny according to “Nerdwallet.” Philadelphia is No. 125, by the way.