Filling out your NCAA bracket during March Madness is a rite of passage; and it’s also everybody’s favorite time of year. Everybody, that is, besides spurned wives and girlfriends and the employers who annually lose billions of dollars worth of productivity to the NCAA tournament games. But maybe those groups put the “madness” into March Madness. For the rest of us, it’s time to put a “method” into your “madness”. Here are the 5 tips you need to know for a winning NCAA bracket come tourney time, every year. Hey, I’ve won my NCAA bracket during March Madness 2 of the last 4 years; if you have done better, you wouldn’t be reading this, would you?
Tip 1 for a winning NCAA bracket during March Madness: Age discrimination
Come NCAA Tournament time, experience rules the field. You want to look for teams that have been to the tournament before and know what to expect. These teams will have juniors and seniors that are mature (physically and mentally) and experienced. Picking experienced teams is always a key factor to a winning NCAA bracket. Want some experienced teams in this year’s March Madness field? UCLA, Georgetown and UNC have been there and done that.
Tip 2 for a winning NCAA bracket during March Madness: The dominant force
The only thing that has a chance to trump the experienced team is the team with the absolute stud, the dominant player who can take over a March Madness game and make it bend to his will. Find the dominant player you believe in, no matter how old or inexperienced, and ride his team to NCAA bracket success this March Madness. Think about what Carmello Anthony did in the NCAA tournament several years ago; that’s how I won the NCAA bracket pool I was in that year. Who are some players with a chance to dominate March Madness 08?Derrick Rose of Memphis, Eric Gordon of Indiana, Michael Beasley of Kansas State and Tyler Hansbrough of UNC come to mind.
Tip 3 for a winning NCAA bracket during March Madness: The 5-12
Most people know this rule: the 5-12 games almost always, year in and year out during March Madness, have an upset. But the rule applies to other match ups that might seem like a gimme for the higher seed on your NCAA bracket. Analyze the 4-13 games and even the 3-14 games for possible upsets waiting to happen. Are any of those particularly hot or cold heading into the NCAA Tournament this year? Is there anybody with a ton of experience in March Madness, or maybe a critical injury? Do your research and pick the high seed, first round upsets on your NCAA bracket. You don’t win the NCAA bracket by picking the favorites.
Tip 4 for a winning NCAA bracket during March Madness: Feel the heat
Don’t just look at records and standings when filling out your NCAA bracket, look at who is the hottest team headed directly into the NCAA Tournament. Think about teams that had to play their way into March Madness by winning their conference tournament. Also consider the teams that were sliding and losing ground prior to the start of the NCAA Tournament. Georgia is riding a huge and emotional momentum streak into March Madness; Pittsburgh outlasted the competition in the Big East; and Tennessee, with the most difficult region, had an early departure from the SEC conference tournament.
Tip 5 for a winning NCAA bracket during March Madness: Location, location, location
Don’t think there is no such thing as home court advantage in the NCAA Tournament. Come March Madness time, the committee bestows good fortune upon a lucky few to play their early round games in close proximity to their school. UNC plays in Raleigh and then Charlotte, that sounds pretty convenient for the Tar Heels in March Madness 08. Texas has a chance to play the regional rounds in Houston.