Missing the big dance is a bummer. After a hard-fought but cut-wrenching loss to the SMU Mustangs, UConn's run for a repeat in the NCAA tournament ended on Sunday.
No UConn? No Problem.
Not to be a downer, but I see an upside in this. Although last year worked in my favor, whenever I see UConn on the line, I can never willingly pick against them. This has led to some happy years (simultaneously winning my friends' bracket and National Championship while being enrolled at UConn in 2011) and other years where I question the very existence of happiness and joy (watching George Mason on mute in 2006 in a library and losing out on a fat bracket pool; all while studying for the SATs that were approaching the following week).
So, it's time to make your run at a championship. No despair and no stakes here – play against writers and fans alike for bragging rights and the ability to shit talk for the next five-and-a-half months until UConn tips off again in October on the road to their fifth National Championship.
If you win, you'll receive a shout out from the Twitter account and be able to say you're the
luckiestmost-knowledgable UConn fan on the planet. And you won't have to feel that guilty not picking us to win it all, again.
Simply sign up here, look for the group: TheUConnBrackets and enter the password: RyanBoatright.
For you keeping track at home, here's a printable bracket.
Have fun, and we'll have loads more coverage on the NIT coming soon.