It's the best time of year -- March Madness (0r, as we like to call it here at CSL, Spring Saltiness)! Take a look at how Zach and Nathan chose their brackets and listen to their logic in this post. Then let us know your wild picks and tell us who you think is going to take the championship this season!
The top half of the bracket breaks out some solid playoff matchups right out of the gate. Universite de Montreal should be able to take down Maryville with ease, but will have trouble against the strategic game that UCSC brings to the table. Ryerson hasn’t looked to be in top form online, but after a great showing at EGLX in Toronto, this team should be back to their winning ways in no time. They should be able to take down Kentucky, and I’d even go so far as to say that they will beat VCU in a close best-of-three. Virginia Tech shouldn’t run into trouble until they face Texas A&M, who could likely overwhelm them and move on to face RMU who should have no trouble making quick work of both University of Arizona and Georgia State University. Both Texas A&M and UCSD will put up valiant efforts, but neither will be able to take down Robert Morris who I believe will take home the championship this time around.
On the other side of things, matchups should be pretty straight forward for favorites. UCF should be able to beat RIT without dropping a map, which will earn them a match againsts CUNY Baruch. All things considered, University of Toronto got a really tough draw round one and while they’re certainly a top-10 school on paper, CUNY Baruch is too tall a task for them at the moment. UBC will get their first test when CUNY Baruch knocks out UCF, but will fall just short of shutting down the giants from New York. University of Colorado, Boulder versus University of California, Irvine will be a barn-burner of a matchup, but the momentum that UCB will have following what should be a tight match against UCLA will carry them past their Californian rivals. Carleton will be tested in their first match by University of California, Riverside, but the Canadians have shown excellent strategic play as of late and should give UCB a run for their money despite being slightly outmatched. Of course, CUNY Baruch should make it past UCB, but this may very well be the year that their brute force playstyle won’t be enough to find them a consecutive championship.
Look, I’m not going to try to hide my bias. I’m from Florida, I’ve lived here my whole life; and picking UCF to win it all is a bit crazy… but its not that crazy. UCF has had a terrific Spring and stand currently undefeated on top of a division that holds juggernauts like Ryerson and University of Texas at Dallas. They also have a way clearer path to victory than the opposing side of the bracket holds, and building momentum is incredibly important when every team is hungry.
Elsewhere, I’ve also tried to fit in some genuine upsets that aren’t TOO far fetched. As is typical of brackets, nothing ever goes as expected. The upper left-hand especially has some insane matchups with crazy potential shakeups. I expect dogfights and tightly contested matches. Ryerson and UCF in the finals aren’t the favorites, but they are certainly possible in a playoffs that are not betting safe.
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