Thursday, March 16, 2017

Nurse the Hate: March Madness Round One

I will be gambling wildly on the NCAA college basketball tournament.  One of the factors that might impede my success in this endeavor is my total lack of knowledge regarding college basketball in 2017.  I have not watched one (1) college basketball game in 2016-2017.  I cannot name one (1) college basketball player.  Not only is that not going to stop me, I am going to feed on this complete lack of knowledge.  I am going to go into this thing with a childlike purity that I think will protect me from harm.  I am like a little lamb walking through the forest.  It’s why some people call me “Lamby”.  I think it is also important to note that I am not alone in this position.  A simple fact is that almost no one knows anything about college basketball.  Each city has two or three old men that watch an inhuman amount of games across a dizzying array of conferences.  In their cases college basketball has filled the void of a loving family or any other interests.  They exist to criticize mid major conference guard play while scarfing down lukewarm concession stand hot dogs.  That is their life.  It is not mine.

I am really no different than every other a-hole out there flapping their bracket around in a sports bar with one striking difference.  I believe that to truly embrace March Madness, one needs to put real money down on these games.  While some pussy is holding onto his Coors Light and white knuckling a late free throw in the Mt. Saint Mary’s game because he has a $10 bracket, I will be enjoying real anxiety over that as I have placed a couple hundo on the shoulders of a 19 year old kid that I didn’t know existed two hours earlier.  That’s what a March distraction is all about.  What do you want to do?  Dwell on reality?  Do you want to really assess your life?  Ye Gods man!  Open up an online sports betting account and get cracking.

I am going to take Xavier +2.  As I mentioned earlier, I have no idea about any of the key facts regarding this game.  What I do know is that college teams have characters.  Almost like a scotch, these institutions of learning have a distinct flavor profile to them that gets repeated year after year after year.  I fully expect Maryland to come out on this game expected to win with a squad full of blue chip recruits with untarnished pedigrees.  Meanwhile Xavier will have some players that can be diplomatically referred to as “colorful” or “rough around the edges”.  These are the guys that might have almost been good enough to play at Kentucky or Ohio State except they have sexual assault charges and/or battery misdemeanors on their record.  They are the guys that walk around Xavier campus 24/7 in warmups and headphones and no one has actually seen attend a class.  The only thing these guys do is play basketball for four years until re-embracing their fringe element past.  I love that kind of team against Maryland.  Maryland has reliably been upset in the tournament each year since 1977.  That steak will continue today.     

I don't like Notre Dame.  Most people don't.  Notre Dame is filled with thick fingered Catholic School boys named Sean that turn vocally racist the second after they have three beers.  They are guys that always wear khaki pants, listen exclusively to Top 40 records, and use the Greater South Bend IN area as a staging area for date rapes in bunk beds. It's not like I love Princeton though.  Princeton is a school filled with smug little fuckers that have been placed in school by their fathers.  They are all creeps too, but they are playing a long game there.  It's not about bullying weaker kids at Princeton.  It's about taking over companies and fleecing stockholders.  There is a kid that is sitting at the end of the Princeton team bench that will probably become my boss in about two years and will use terms like "paradigm shift", "low hanging fruit" and "right sourcing" in a meeting that I zone out in.  I will hate him with every fiber of my being.  I might as well start now.  I'm on Notre Dame -7.

In what is going to be a big mistake, I am going to buy into the national rhetoric in East Tennessee State being a Cinderella team.  For a team like East Tennessee to get good, they need to assemble a bunch of players that have no business being in college.  The coach needs to have very flexible morals, or perhaps none at all.  I looked up the coach of East Tennessee and discovered that he is a bald dude with a goatee that looks like Satan if Satan might eat at Shoney's on the weekend.  He also used to assistant coach at Wichita State, another program with flexible moral fiber.  He was cut loose at Tennessee after violations.  I love what I am hearing.  That's how you win college basketball games.  East Tennessee State +10.5 

I am also going to take a directional Tennessee school versus Purdue.  I never cared for Purdue because of my long malaise with the state of Indiana and an incident where a college roommate hitchhiked to Purdue to see his high school sweetheart.  As I recall, my buddy Jeff drunkenly decided at 230 am to go see his girlfriend.  Not having a car, he hitchhiked on the Ohio Turnpike.  He was picked up  by a truck driver who, after an hour of small talk, asked Jeff to give him a blowjob.  Jeff claims to have talked his way out of it and then been dropped off at the general area of West Lafayette IN near the Purdue campus without further incident.  I don't think Jeff did blow that guy, but I will bet some sort of very uncomfortable thing happened that Jeff has stored in a deep dark part of his brain that he hopes never to open.  I will tell you this, I don't want to know what happened.  I hope he never "unburdens himself" telling the story while crying late at night. I don't want to have to sit there looking at a crying man saying things like "it doesn't matter" when, of course, it does matter.  I would rather pretend that nothing happened that will change my perception of him forever.  Sorry.  Got off track.  Is this a basketball gambling blog?  Anyway, Jeff shows up at his girlfriend's dorm room to discover she was sleeping at some other guy's place.  She and her new college boyfriend wind up taking Jeff out for a very uncomfortable meal at the Purdue cafeteria.  I would call Jeff's roadtrip "bad" all the way around.  With that in mind, I am on Middle Tennessee State -1.    


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