The Kickoff to March Madness


The Kansas Jayhawks practicing prior to the March Madness tournament in 2016.

By Michael McKay, Staff Writer

Basketball fans’ cannot seem to contain their excitement over an upcoming tournament: March Madness. March Madness is a massive tournament in NCAA college basketball, where 68 teams try to advance through the bracket and make it to the NCAA Championship.

The bracket was just released Sun., March 11. The number one ranked teams in each division are Virginia for the South, Villanova for the East, Xavier for the West, and Kentucky for the Midwest. Everybody participating in filling out a March Madness bracket has different strategies to advance. Some people will choose the first seed, some may choose an underdog, and some may flat out choose their favorite team.

Walking through the halls of Niles West, NCAA is constantly being talked about. Students fill out their brackets and share their opinions on who they believe is going to win. Senior Markos Zanoni is confident that Michigan State will take home the championship.

“I decided to throw MSU in there to win it all. Miles Bridges came back to the team for a second year just to get a run at the championship because they were knocked out early last year. Tom Izzo is one of the best coaches in college basketball right now, and he can teach his players really well. He’s got good calls, so I trust his expertise to take them far,” Zanoni said.

Senior Wil Shemroske believes Duke is going to go all the way and take home the championship.

“Duke is going to win it, no doubt,” Shemroske said. “They have so much firepower. I have so much hope in true freshman Marvin Bagley III. He’s a great player. He can definitely take them all the way.

Senior Ben Manogura is one of many students who filled out multiple brackets, all with slightly different outcomes.

“I actually have multiple brackets. I got Arizona winning most of my brackets. Arizona’s been killing it this year. I took a risk with my fourth bracket and put Kansas in there. I was just filling out the bracket, and Kansas seemed to be like the team that would do the best,” Manogura said.

The first game to be played in the tournament is the First Four round, which will be LIU-Brooklyn against Radford, Tues. Mar. 13 at 7:40 p.m.