March Madness: America at Its Best

Monday, 19 Mar 2012 09:10 AM

By Jon Friedman

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March Madness is America at its best. Seriously.

I love to see people getting excited — about anything, really. It seems silly to obsess over their brackets and fretting about schools like Murray State and South Dakota State and Saint Louis. Most of the people who join office pools couldn't name five college basketball players or, for that matter, tell you where Murray State is located. No matter.

I'm right there. I had embraced South Dakota State as my pet choice to pull an upset and pull me ahead in my pool. Unfortunately, the heavily favored Baylor squad lived up to its billing and won that game. It was stunning to watch Duke and Missouri, a pair of No. 2 seeded teams, become victims of shocking upsets.

I love watching all the games on television because the young players and the fans in the stands get so worked up. It's refreshing to watch college basketball at its most intense, compared with the blase oh-so-cool millionaires who play in the National Basketball Association. I get the feeling that those smug NBA stars wouldn't dive for a loose ball unless a $100 bill happened to be attached to it.

For my part, I am pulling for the University of North Carolina to go all the way. I have no loyalty to the Tarheels — and no, I couldn't even tell you what a Tarheel really is — but I think this is the best school in the nation. Kentucky, Michigan State, and Kansas are formidable, too. But I have a feeling about UNC.

But even if UNC falls short, it's cool.

I will have a good time watching the festivities. I'll get excited like everyone else, too. You gotta love March Madness. In a year when politics and the economy and foreign policy and natural disasters dominate the nation's headlines and preoccupy us every day, it's a relief to be able to relax with the March Madness craziness.

It's great to watch America get excited.

Jon Friedman writes the Media Web column for MarketWatch.com. Click here to read his latest column. Read more reports from Jon Friedman — Click Here Now.








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