March Madness Musings

Written by Posted On Friday, 02 April 2021 00:00

About this time last year (2020) the NCAA basketball selection committee decided to cancel its March Madness basketball tournament due to the wild spike of COVID-19. However, they were bound and determined to hold this event in 2021, which they have done. At this writing, we are in the “Sweet Sixteen” week of this tournament.

However, much consideration had to be given to keeping the players, team personnel, game officials, and staff sequestered in order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The NBA had set a pattern for that in 2020 by taking all of the same personnel to Orlando, Florida.

The NCAA selected Indianapolis, Indiana as their site for their 2021 March Madness, since the NCAA headquarters is located there with the city and surroundings having four stadiums and others close by as well and ample hotel space to house all that personnel. They held their breath hoping all would go OK.

Well, almost! The Virginia Commonwealth University Rams had multiple players affected by this virus and had to fly those players home while the rest of the team was sent home via bus, thus declaring their first game in March Madness “no contest.” At this writing, the committee is still holding its breath that no other team follows that path. That “no contest” advanced #7 seed Oregon on to play and defeat #2 seed Iona in the West division.

Perhaps one of the surprises in that 16 is that 25% (four of 16) are all from the Pac-12. This is an unusual number since the Pac-12 is often left with only one or two teams at this level with the Big 10 or SEC or ACC usually having three or four at that level. Upsets occur i.e., lower rankings often beating higher since the ranking system is somewhat subjective. Simply because one’s conference record is successful doesn’t mean such a team can succeed throughout. The committee does its best to consider all aspects in the ranking of teams.

More importantly, is that fans must consider that March Madness is “just another game.” Consider the fans who sent vile and threatening messages to Ohio State sophomore forward E.J. Liddell whose Buckeyes (ranked No. 2 in the South Division) lost 75-72 in OT) in the first round to No. 15 Oral Roberts University. These vile and threatening messages (one to the point of physically attacking E.J.) are just another hate message being rampant in America today. We must do all we can to overturn hatred.

Will you practice civility (helping others as well) in overcoming this despicable attitude?

Rate this item
(0 votes)
Dr. Jim Tunney

Jim Tunney had an exemplary career in sports. A former high school coach, teacher, principal and district superintendent, he had a 40-year career in officiating football and basketball.

Thirty-one of those years he was an NFL Referee working a record twenty-nine post-season games including four Super Bowls, ten NFC/AFC Championship games, six Pro Bowls and twenty-five Monday Night Games.

He officiated some of the most memorable games in NFL history. His book Impartial Judgment: “The Dean of NFL Referees” Calls Pro Football As He Sees It, chronicles his NFL career.

As a Professional Speaker, he is Past President of The National Speakers Association and a Charter Member of its most prestigious group – The CPAE Speakers Hall of Fame. Jim holds every professional designation of the NSA, including the Oscar of Professional Speaking – The Cavett. NSA named him Philanthropist of the Year in 2007.

Dr. Tunney (a doctorate in Education from the University of Southern California) continues to serve his community as  Trustee Emeritus of both Monterey Peninsula College and York School; where he once served as Headmaster. In 1993, he founded the Jim Tunney Youth Foundation to support local community programs that develop leadership, work skills, wellness and self-esteem in youth. He and his wife Linda live in Pebble Beach, California. They have six children and sixteen grandchildren.

As an author he has written and/or co-authored thirteen books: Impartial Judgment, Chicken Soup for the Sports Fan’s Soul, Speaking Secrets of the Masters, You Can Do It!, Super Bowl Sunday, Insights into Excellence, Lessons in Leadership, Build a Better You and his most recent book, It’s the Will, Not the Skill.

If you are looking for a keynote speaker who educates, motivates and entertains with a lifetime of stories about leadership, team building and sports 831-595-3258.

Realty Times

From buying and selling advice for consumers to money-making tips for Agents, our content, updated daily, has made Realty Times® a must-read, and see, for anyone involved in Real Estate.