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[ ] Picking Time
2007-03-13 11:00
by Bob Timmermann

After running a contest for the Pac-10 tournament, it's time to move up to the big leagues. It's time for a contest the pick entire the NCAA tournament.

And instead of doing it myself, I've left the work to Yahoo. Commenter bhsportsguy set up our first private group, which can hold up to 250 entries. If need be, there is a back up.

You can find the link at Yahoo Sports (it's rather obvious). You want to join a private group, 94308. The password is "griddle". (case sensitive)

With more teams in the field, the stakes have gotten higher. No mere $5 gift card. Nope, you get the greatest prize of all: bragging rights! I would promise to put the winner's name (or alias) on the sidebar for an entire year. Just think how much that would impress your kids/spouse/employer/parents/boyfriend/girlfriend/roommate. If someone is all of these to you, then you've should stop watching "Chinatown."

Scott Long over at The Juice blog has sponsored a contest before and he'll be letting you know about the previous winners and Scott will definitely have more opinions on the matter.

And now, thanks to my noncorporate sponsor, ToyCannon, there is a chance of an actual prize for the winner!
There are four choices that the winner may select from:
1) four tickets to a future Dodgers game, subject to negotiating with ToyCannon for which game. It would have to be a weekday game with no giveaways.
2) a choice of one of three books:
"Paths to Glory: How Great Baseball Teams Got That Way" by Mark L. Armour and Daniel R. Levitt
"Nine Innings" by Daniel Okrent
"National Pastime: How Americans Play Baseball and the Rest of the World Plays Soccer" by Stefan Szymanski and Andrew Zimbalist

So, in addition to earning my unending respect and admiration, you can also help my clear bookshelf space! I have read all three books and they are all very good.

Comments (79)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-03-12 08:35:42
1.   D4P
Hmmm...The group number and password are not working for me...
2007-03-12 09:25:25
2.   Bob Timmermann
Sorry, transposed digits. The new number should work.

I hope...

2007-03-12 09:41:18
3.   D4P
It worked with "griddle" as the password (i.e. with a lower-case g, not an upper case)
2007-03-12 10:44:13
4.   Bob Timmermann
Thanks. Duly noted above. Thanks for being the beta tester!
2007-03-12 10:53:19
5.   D4P
Who knows: I may even actually submit a bracket!
2007-03-12 10:55:06
6.   Bob Timmermann
A trip to Oregon for me could be at stake!
2007-03-12 10:58:15
7.   D4P
Desperate times call for desperate measures!
2007-03-12 11:26:37
8.   bhsportsguy
6 You have some type of wager involving crossing state lines?
2007-03-12 11:33:21
9.   Bob Timmermann
If Oregon beats Notre Dame to go to the Sweet Sixteen, I will visit Oregon for a weekend.

If Oregon goes to the Final Four, I will spend a week in Oregon. I may even go to Burns!

2007-03-12 11:36:15
10.   Eric Enders
Maybe we can bust him for violating the Mann Act.
2007-03-12 11:37:19
11.   D4P
I may even go to Burns!


2007-03-12 11:39:13
12.   Uncle Miltie
I just filled out my facebook and Griddle brackets.

So who's who?

I really want to know who "Durant Will Beat Your Ass" is.

2007-03-12 11:44:27
13.   Eric Enders
12 That would be me.
2007-03-12 11:48:40
14.   bhsportsguy
13 How many points will he score if he faces the height challenged USC Trojans?
2007-03-12 11:49:43
15.   bhsportsguy
9 What happens if the Domers win?
2007-03-12 11:53:20
16.   Bob Timmermann
I then execute a plan to detonate a set of suitcase nukes throughout NW Indiana. I've picked up some pointers from watching "24"
2007-03-12 12:03:51
17.   Uncle Miltie
13- lol, great name
2007-03-12 12:11:24
18.   Eric Enders
13 The problem is that Durant doesn't have the stamina to put together two great halves. He'll go off for 25 in one half of a game but in the other half his fatigue will get the best of him.

He's playing a lot better defense than he was the first part of the year -- he had 6 blocks against Kansas yesterday, so he could go all Brook Lopez on the Trojans. They tend to play a lot of 2-3 zone with Durant playing at the top of the key, so even if you can drive around him he will block your shot from behind.

2007-03-12 12:12:32
19.   Eric Enders
18 referred to 14.
2007-03-12 12:22:42
20.   Bob Timmermann
Idle observation from the Pac-10 Tournament. UCLA fans like to wear Texas shirts around USC fans because they think it bothers them.

Someone really needs to tell them that it doesn't. At least not any of the USC fans I know.

I wonder about my fellow UCLA alums sometimes. They seem so... so .... I can't think of a good word.

2007-03-12 12:25:10
21.   Steve
I can.
2007-03-12 13:27:13
22.   bhsportsguy
18 I think I can make one prediction about this tournament that will come true, there is not a chance that Vince Young or Reggie Bush will be in Spokane, Washington to watch a potential matchup of Texas vs. USC on Sunday.
2007-03-12 13:29:35
23.   bhsportsguy
BTW - Bob, outside of Reggie Bush, any other former Trojans show up at the Tournament final?
2007-03-12 14:08:59
24.   Eric Enders
23 Paul Westphal.
2007-03-12 14:19:46
25.   Bob Timmermann
I didn't see really anyone of import since I sat in the second level and missed out on the lobby action.

I could see a lot of players' families. Aaron Brooks seems to like holding his baby daughter a lot. Brook Lopez went into the seats after Stanford was eliminated and looked to be crying on his mom's shoulder for quite a while.

2007-03-12 14:35:58
26.   bhsportsguy
24 No Jack Haley sightings (I saw him last year in Long Beach by those restaurants by the marina) I did't ask him about that alleged Carlos Boozer trade proposal.
2007-03-12 14:47:30
27.   Derek Smart
"If Oregon goes to the Final Four, I will spend a week in Oregon. I may even go to Burns!"

Why, in the name of all that is holy, would you want to do something like that? I mean, I'd love to see the Ducks in the Final Four, but there's no reason for OREGONIONS to go to Burns....

2007-03-12 14:54:11
28.   Eric Enders
Oregonions -- the new appetizer at Applebees!
2007-03-12 14:55:18
29.   Bob Timmermann
The Oregon Desert has always fascinated me.

Well, maybe not always.

2007-03-12 15:10:42
30.   D4P
If nothing else, Bob should make a point to take in a Duck basketball game (might as well be against UCLA) at Mac Court before they build the new, generic monstrosity to take its place.
2007-03-12 15:12:06
31.   bhsportsguy
28 Its better than what Riordan always referred people who lived in L.A., Angelenos, I hated that.
2007-03-12 15:12:09
32.   Bob Timmermann
I would likely go to Oregon in the summertime and try to see the Portland Beavers play, but I would like to visit Eugene and Corvallis.
2007-03-12 15:12:51
33.   Bob Timmermann
But people from Los Angeles are Angelenos. Do you have a better name for them?
2007-03-12 15:13:45
34.   D4P
Why not make two trips? It's so crazy it just might work...
2007-03-12 15:16:14
35.   Bob Timmermann
Can't I just drive from Portland to Eugene?
2007-03-12 15:17:25
36.   Bob Timmermann
Also to clarify, IF Notre Dame were to lose to Winthrop, then the weekend Oregon trip offer is automatically nullified.
2007-03-12 15:18:08
37.   D4P
Yes, quite easily. But I meant, why not make a trip to see a Duck basketball game in the winter, and a minor league baseball trip in the summer?
2007-03-12 15:18:53
38.   D4P
then the weekend Oregon trip offer is automatically nullified

, to be replaced by a South Carolina trip.

2007-03-12 15:19:58
39.   Bob Timmermann
I only travel in rabbit season.
2007-03-12 15:28:43
40.   Derek Smart
Bob, definitely go see the Beavers play. It's a nice stadium (albeit, still with an atrocious playing surface when I was there six years or so ago), and it's right in the middle of the city, so it's easy to get to, and there's plenty of other stuff to do in the vacinity.
2007-03-12 15:35:07
41.   Bob Timmermann
I wouldn't mind seeing the OSU Beavers playing baseball either.
2007-03-12 15:41:25
42.   D4P
Sounds like the trip is really taking shape
2007-03-12 15:41:58
43.   D4P
BTW: Does/will your lady friend ever accompany you on your baseball trips?
2007-03-12 15:44:05
44.   bhsportsguy
33 Are you a South Pasadean?
Seriously, no, I have no other name, I just wish we had a better name.
2007-03-12 15:48:08
45.   Bob Timmermann
I'm a South Pasadenan. Works well for me.

My lady friend only goes to baseball games begrudgingly.

2007-03-12 15:50:58
46.   D4P
My dad took my mom on a 9-game baseball extravaganza for their honeymoon, sometime around 1970. As he tells it, the Dodgers played 9 games against the Giants and Padres, 3 each in SF, LA, and SD, and won all 9.

My mom evidently wasn't impressed. They got divorced 5 years later.

2007-03-12 17:25:39
47.   Vishal
i have oregon winning it all, and usc beating texas :)
2007-03-12 17:29:29
48.   Humma Kavula
I was sick this weekend, so watched a lot of college basketball. This has given me the mistaken impression that I know something about college basketball.

Being sick this weekend has doomed me to failure in the pool. How will I ever win those sweet, sweet bragging rights?

2007-03-12 18:11:44
49.   Sam DC
My silly silly picks are in.
2007-03-12 18:18:40
50.   Steve
American isn't even in the tournament, Sam. Geez.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-03-12 18:20:26
51.   Bob Timmermann
There are 19 entries now.

Presumably some people are waiting because they believe such matters take time.

I got 33 entries for the Pac-10 tournament contest, but that was 9 games and there was a cash prize at the end!

2007-03-12 18:37:32
52.   Sam DC
I'm hardly active in these things, but I expect most people, like me, are sinking beneath the weight of bracket invites and struggling to figure out what to do.

Deadspin appears to be writing (subcontracting for) a full multiparagraph write up of every game in the tournament.

Really, does the world need 60 lines on Boston College v. Texas Tech?

2007-03-12 20:04:38
53.   Bob Timmermann
I tend to look at this from an economic standpoint. Is it the incentives? Is it a matter of time? Overexposure? Lack of concern about being well-regarded by me?
2007-03-12 20:53:48
54.   Greg Brock
I win "most hastily cobbled together bracket" contest. Thank goodness we can modify them.
2007-03-12 21:10:09
55.   Icaros
Yahoo must know that I know nothing of college basketball and only want to randomly fill a bracket out so I can pretend to have something to do because I keep getting "This ID is not yet taken," and I've checked the number and password (case sensitive) roughly 72,000,000 times now.
2007-03-12 21:21:52
56.   Bob Timmermann
23 people have managed to figure it out.
2007-03-12 21:28:57
57.   Eric Enders
52 "Really, does the world need 60 lines on Boston College v. Texas Tech?"

Well, this would be more succinct:

Dudley's cornrows bounce
Like a Catholic school skirt
And a chair takes flight

2007-03-12 21:35:54
58.   Icaros
Oh, I get it now. I have to do some other registration first. I'm too lazy for that.
2007-03-12 21:38:27
59.   Bob Timmermann
I've got to write 60 lines on Niagara vs. Florida A&M.
2007-03-12 21:47:37
60.   Eric Enders
Purple teams rule, but
Calvin Murphy is 60
Bring the snake serum
2007-03-12 21:48:23
61.   Eric Enders
Damn, the syllables are wrong on that one.
2007-03-13 07:15:22
62.   Penarol1916
I haven't signed up because I always seem to have a problem getting a yahoo ID. I can no longer access any non-work e-mail sight from work and yahoo does not seem to be able to get through my work e-mail's spam filter.
2007-03-13 08:41:08
63.   Ali Nagib
Up to 34 now.
2007-03-13 09:57:20
64.   Bob Timmermann
Poster ToyCannon has offered up four tickets to a Dodgers game at the winner's negotiation with him.

However, I know that an entrant may be from outside of the L.A. metro area, so I'm open for suggestion as to what to get a winner from somewhere else.

2007-03-13 10:21:30
65.   Bob Timmermann
I hit upon a solution updated above.
2007-03-13 10:50:59
66.   El Lay Dave
How can you fill out a bracket this soon - we don't even know who Kansas' opponent is!
2007-03-13 12:50:45
67.   Johan
In all seriousness, ever since the institution of the 65 team field, I have felt that the play-in should be a game between what the committee determines to be the last two at-large teams. Give me a break, the loser of the play-in has not really made the NCAA tournament. Some 11-18 team that won its C-Tourney gets screwed every year now.

Interest in that game would certainly skyrocket.

2007-03-13 13:31:33
68.   Penarol1916
67. I've always thought that was a fantastic idea in theory, but like with many great ideas, the logistics make it more difficult. Primarily it is the fact that teams from the same conference can't be in the same half of a region or in the same quartile of the same region and the committee wants to avoid rematches in the first two round. This is much easier to do with two 16 seeds since they generally come from a conference with no other teams in the tournament, thus the committee only has to worry about avoiding rematches.

To me, the best solution would be to eliminate the automatic bid to the conference that started all of these problems the MWC. Of course, once the Big East splits, there will be a clamor for another play-in game to not cost the big guys an at large.

2007-03-13 13:35:57
69.   Bob Timmermann
Someone has sounded the MWC Alarm! This will bring pain and misery on us all.
2007-03-13 14:04:52
70.   Eric Enders
But there have been very few years in which the MWC tournament winner wouldn't have gotten in as an at-large anyway.
2007-03-13 14:17:20
71.   dianagramr
The play-in game should involve any team(s) with a head coach that jumped ship in the middle of his contract, as a prize for persevering.

Call it the "Steve Fisher" game.

2007-03-13 14:33:32
72.   Bob Timmermann
Shouldn't it be the Bill Frieder Game then?
2007-03-13 14:41:34
73.   Eric Enders
It should be the Billy Gillispie game, in that case.
2007-03-14 16:29:13
74.   saltcreek
I signed up but im not listed in the group standings...does anyone else see me? The bracket name is Harry Crerar.
2007-03-14 16:30:08
75.   saltcreek
2007-03-14 18:37:41
76.   Greg Brock
74 Click on "Complete Standings" on top. It'll list everybody involved.
2007-03-14 18:38:02
77.   Greg Brock
75 Nevermind
2007-03-14 22:24:54
78.   confucius
I'm in baby!

Too bad this wasn't an NIT bracket. That's something I REALLY care about.

2007-03-15 07:11:07
79.   Sushirabbit
I'm in, too. Though I realize I should've called mine Xeno's Bracket.

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