March Madness isn’t strictly about the basketball games being played on the court… it’s about showing all your co-workers how much you know (or pretend to know) about Division I men’s college basketball. C2G, like so many other workplaces in the US, is in a full court press when it comes to crowning the winner of the men’s NCAA playoff bracket competition. C2G doesn’t just participate in the bracket game, we celebrate the college basketball playoff season with a chili cook off and a fundraiser basketball shootout at the office. We take competition pretty seriously at C2G, which leads us to the topic of this blog post… having to deal with “that guy” or “that girl” during the playoffs. We all have them at our office and C2G’s not exempt! So let’s chat about these enthusiastic “fans” and see if any of them sound familiar.
“I played division 17 basketball” guy/girl – You’ve been listening to their stories for years, right? The one about how their cross over is still as nasty as it was in college, how they held the single season record for assists in the school’s inaugural year or how hard they dunked on the equipment manager that one time in practice! You just want to talk about the real college athletes and the games currently being played…not your co-worker’s glory years. Ultimately, this is just another opportunity for him or her to create a false perception of their abilities during their career at the YMCA…I mean college.
“Copy the experts” guy/girl – Too caught up in catching reruns of Dukes of Hazard to watch an actual game, they thought ahead and DVR’d the ESPN bracket breakdown with expert analysts. They listened to talk radio for four straight days to make sure they were up-to-date on all of the breaking news in case they need to change a pick. This is only to be followed up by them getting up-to-speed on everyone else’s bracket to confirm the experts were right. After the four brackets they entered into the office pool are busted, kissing away the $20 they paid for each bracket, they’ll never play again.
“Day 1 leader” guy/girl – They picked four upsets in round one and then the same obvious picks everyone else took. They made sure to let you know that they would be in the lead if Duke beats Avon University later that evening. Once that game’s buzzer sounds later that night, and they are clearly in the lead, forget trying to toll them anything. They’ve already sent a company-wide email proclaiming glory and informed their significant other that he/she would be buying a new TV with the winnings. Round one matters; unfortunately, it doesn’t matter as much when all of your first round picks get trounced by 30 points in the second round…welcome to the basement, partner!
There are numerous other “types” to avoid during March Madness. There’s compulsive gambling guy who simply uses his bracket as a way to track his nine-team parlay, 12 over 5 seed guy who just knew without a doubt that they would win, the over-reactor guy who stops by your desk to tell you that #1 seed Kentucky is down by 3 with 13 minutes left…in the first half, and last but not least is the fella heading the whole bracket madness for the company. He or she sent you 15 emails just to get you into the competition, then they remind you every day to make sure to fill out and submit your bracket, all while hunting you down relentlessly for the $5 entry fee. "Noon people…pay up or you’re disqualified from our precious event." Someone please kindly remind him that there are roughly 60 games to be played over a 3 week period…I promise, I will pay you!
So, what’s your experience like, and can you relate to any of these? Are YOU that guy or gal?
By Kenneth Poland
C2G Manager of Product Lifecycle Management and Merchandising