The Madness of March

Every year, March Madness finds new ways to live up to its name. Fifteen seeds in the Sweet 16, 9 seeds winning regional championship, and horrific leg injuries have been the most well-known story lines of 2013. No matter what level of interest one has in basketball, or sports in general, the NCAA tournament permeates all levels of popular culture. Florida Gulf Coast University, in only its second year of Division-1 eligibility, became the first 15 seed to win more than one game in the tournament, earning the university- and its coach- much more recognition than anyone expected. Coach Andy Enfield announced plans to depart for USC only two years into a five-year contract. In an interview with USA Today, Enfield said "I took this job (at FGCU) knowing where FGCU was. They lost 20 games four straight years.” Clearly, their success has caught national attention. Following the winning streak, hits to the FGCU admissions website jumped over 400% before causing the site to crash. The school, nicknamed “Dunk City” for the athletes high-flying antics, hopes to continue their success and entertainment value- battling USC over the nickname. Arguably the most talked about story, and inarguably the most terrifying, was the injury of Kevin Ware. The Louisville guard broke his leg landing, splitting both bones and forcing one six inches out of his leg. However, he didn’t at first realize the extent of his injury. In an interview with ESPN, Ware stated he at first thought that it was his ankle. He realized something was amiss, however, when his teammates and opponents alike collapsed to the ground, many crying in shock and horror at what they had just witnessed. Ware was less concerned with himself than his team- as he was being taken out of the gym, he had one thing to say: win the game. Facing Louisville in the Final Four is another underdog story, Wichita State. WSU, a 9 seed, had the chance to be the lowest-seeded team to ever win the tournament. By the time we publish, a champion will have been crowned. It’s unlikely that the aptly-named Shockers will be that champion, but who knows? It’s called madness for a reason.