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Bracketology, in history and in practice

Posted: Monday, Mar 25th, 2013

PINEDALE – Every March, the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) holds one of the greatest spectacles in sports, a non-stop, action-packed thrill ride of a basketball tournament. Athletes from across the nation work tirelessly all season long for a shot at “the big dance,” a chance to be one of the 68 teams (since 2011) to be seeded in the tournament.

For many fans, the casual and die-hards alike, much of the tournament’s thrill is derived from trying to predict exactly how the winners and losers will shake out. While the term “March Madness” has been around as long as the tournament itself, the recent rise of the bracket pool has certainly lent to the madness.

An actual history of bracketology is tough to pin down; the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship started in 1939 with an eight-team line up. Hardly a bracket, but sports enthusiasts at the time were certainly picking favorites and sharing them with friends and colleagues for bragging rights.

For the complete article see the 03-26-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 03-26-2013 paper.

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