Busted bracket campus recreation challenge

Sports Editor

The one word that can describe the vast majority of NCAA March Madness brackets at this point is busted.

This year, the campus recreation department hosted a bracket challenge for students to enter their picks for the tournament. Less than half of the 28 entries have their champion team pick surviving the tournament.

“(Of) other predicted winners, seven people have Florida winning,” said Brian Smith, coordinator of Sports and Competition. “Three people have Michigan State and one has Louisville.”

By the end of the second and third rounds of the tournament in St. Louis, Mo., all Kansas collegiate basketball teams were knocked off the road to glory leaving bracket participants doubtful that their picks would continue to remain afloat.

“Wichita State is probably the biggest loss I have had,” Smith said. “And looking at the rest of our brackets, pretty much the biggest loss for everything.”

Challenge participant Vaughn Crandell, a WSU senior, said she hoped the Shockers would make it all the way and picked the team to take the championship title. After the team fell to the Kentucky Wildcats, 78-76, many of the participant’s brackets fell apart.

“That was definitely the biggest break for me was having the Wichita State team go all the way, because I just still had a lot of faith in them going,” Crandell said. “But I was still really proud for what they did.”

Giving the Shockers their lone loss of the season, sophomore Garrett Taylor said he hopes that the Wildcats walk away with the national title.

“When we lost to Louisville last year, I hoped they would win,” Taylor said. “Since we lost to Kentucky, I want them to win.”

Even though the turnout is not what Crandell expected, she said she is grateful that the campus recreation department created the challenge for students to participate in.

“I’m really glad that Wichita State decided to do it as an intramural thing,” Crandell said. “I thought it was really cool because I fill out a bracket every year, so I think it’s a really cool thing that they should keep doing.”