What did I say last post a few days ago about President Obama’s 2011 March Madness Barackets falling fast?
Well, they fell faster than pretty much anyone could have expected!
In a year where parity ruled in NCAA Men’s College basketball, without a truly dominant team, President Obama picked the #1 ranked team from every region to be in the Final Four.
Now he’s going to pay for it because he has no teams left in the Final Four, which meant he advanced no teams from the Elite 8, which meant the last round he got points from was the Sweet 16. That’s getting partial points from just 3 of 6 possible rounds, or a failing grade any way you measure it except on a curve.
Very fortunately for da POTUS, this year’s brackets will be gauged on a curve, even if it won’t be measured on a curve. By that I mean people will still have their scores, but that so many will get less than half the points possible that the more meaningful score will be the percentile rank, to show how many percent of brackets da Prez beat or got beaten by.
With seeds Nos 3, 4, 8 and 11 in the Final Four, relatively few people will have one or more team left in their brackets for the Final Four, and that team will still have to win a game for brackets containing them to get points. For example, if you have UConn left for the Final Four, Uconn will have to win a game for your standing to change aside from others passing you because they had a team that will win in the national semi-finals.
ESPN says “just two out of 5.9 million-plus brackets in Tournament Challenge correctly predicted the entire Final Four, with only 1,093 brackets having three of the Final Four correct, and 2.1% having two right. A total of 27.6 percent had one Final Four team, and 70.3 percent had no Final Four teams correct.
That said, we’ll see how many people had a team that will win in the Final Four in their brackets when all is said and done. However, for now, Obama is still flying high, sitting ahead of 94.9% of brackets in the ESPN Tournament Challenge, and he will beat at least 70% of the brackets, giving him victory over the majority!
Just remember, there are still 640 points to be had (160 for each semi-final game, 320 for the winner of the finals). Obama only has 650 points overall. To put that in perspective, if you had only picked two of the Final Four teams correctly, and nothing else, and they won to go to the finals, and you picked that winner, you could beat Obama’s Barackets. Talk about “failing”, if only absolute scores were measured, eh?
That said, I need to own up and state my brackets only got 550 points and I am also done for. So for the first time in the three years da POTUS has declared his Barackets, I have lost to him.
Hail to the Chief! (and I’m not even American) 🙂
Traditional as Obama might have been to stick to the favourites as much as he did, though, he’s no Rick Pitino. Pitino talks a lot on ESPN about how he really thinks the underdogs could win if they did this or that, but when it’s pick time, he always go with the favourite. Now, I know he can’t upset other coaches, especially ones at power programs ranked high, by saying he thinks some little school could upset them. He does have to hold favour for the coaches polls each year. Besides, when you’re wrong with the masses, you don’t look bad. You might not look brilliant, but he’s got a track record he doesn’t need to buffer that reputation much more. Picking wrong upsets just makes you look bad.
But hey, at least I’m not Jay Bil-ass who made an ass of himself talking about Virginia Commonwealth University and continues to deny how he torpedoed his own credibility, saying VCU’s run and performance has nothing to do with the selection process. The Selection Committee tries to choose the teams that would provide the best competition in the field, putting a human touch on a partially data driven process. VCU’s run is the indicator that the Committee got that one more than right. He should man up and admit he was wrong, or go talk about something other than basketball… and I’m not sure many would listen even if he did if he continued to deny he was wrong.
The Committee should have picked far fewer Big East teams, though. All this “spin” by Jim Boeheim using selective misleading stats, the kind that are worse than lies and damned lies, doesn’t fool any real analyst. You put 11 teams in from any decent conference and you’ll get someone putting through a run. So what if the 9th team in the conference is in the Final Four, Rick Pitino said, I think, in one ESPN interview with Jim Boeheim? If that says anything the strength of the conference, where are the other 8 teams better than UConn? Jim also quote some stupid stat about 13% of Big East teams remained in the final 12 or 16, and how that was comparable to other conferences. Well, if you only have 7, 1 team left unfortunately reduces you to that range because 2 teams left and you are at 28%. One team in and no longer there and you’re at 0%, though a team remaining like Butler leaves what Jim would call a “fluke” at 100%. Get the manipulative math?
I might not agree with Charles Barkley the Big East is the Big Least, but it should have been the Big Less amongst the picks this year considering all the parity seen.