Basketball traditions reach farther than just the court

Brianna Arity

The sweet sounds of basketballs hitting the floors and sneakers squeaking are slowly creeping into every person’s room this time of year. Yes, I am talking about the beloved NCAA basketball tournament that has so much intensity that even college student’s stress over this stuff. Numerous tournament brackets are filled out and, in all honesty, probably are checked more often than homework. For weeks, books are replaced with notebooks filled with hand-drawn strategic plays and statistics of every player and team. It is the only time of year you will see a grown man cry and a Cinderella story surface.

The time has come. One of the most watched sporting events in the world is here and no one can stop it. We so desperately want to be a part of the action and can’t help our excitement. It’s the answer to everyone’s problems, simply because of all the controversy. It is addictive. It is spreading. People who seem to not understand the sport of basketball still fill out numerous brackets, just to be involved in all the drama. It seems like the newest game of Tetris, finding what team fits where and who might erase the others. You never know which number one seed will quickly get erased from the pack and what underdog team will conquer them all and win the championship.

The most nerve-racking situation may be the dreaded first round. Who will win? Who will lose? You never know what team or coach will overcome every defeat to climb that ladder and hoist the golden net. Whether it is men or women, the game is always the same. Shots are taken with ease, layups are turned into dunks and buzzer shots can be the decision maker. Defenders fall on every hit hoping to get the charge call and coaches throw up their hands in disgust and disappointment. 

It seems to be the most popular decision to pick the best team to go all the way and win it all. Have we not learned anything throughout the past years? Teams compete and teams fail. Teams fall apart, fall down and some don’t know how to pick themselves back up. The most popular players seem to get knocked out along the way and the unheard of team slowly moves their way through the brackets. Team after team show up to win but only one can take it all.

If you haven’t filled out your brackets by now, you’re behind the gang of sports-loving people. You have missed the upsets. You have missed the projected professional prospects and the fun little meltdowns. If you have filled a bracket out, stay calm and don’t stress. 

In the end it is always the same; coaches’ coach, players play, and viewers watch in excited anticipation. Wipe the drool dedicated fans: it’s not even close to being over.



Brianna Arity is majoring in early childhood education. She can be reached at [email protected].