Every year I tell myself I’m not going to be a homer when it comes to filling out my March Madness bracket. The Buckeyes haven’t been to the Final Four since 2012 and haven’t even made it to the championship game since 2007. And yet, every year I still end up picking Ohio State to go way further in the tournament than any rational person would.
I first started doing brackets when I was at Ohio State, from 2005-2009, which was during a time in Buckeye basketball that choosing the Scarlet and Gray to go far had a better likelihood than not. But, in the years since Aaron Craft and Jared Sullinger shared the floor, I’ve taken a lot of flack — and lost a lot of money — for choosing Ohio State to make it past the first few rounds of the tournament.
Even in my brackets...I cant...I WONT choose TTUN...even if it ends up costing me $1B!!! #diehardBuckeye— Alexis Chassen (@Lovelybuckeye) March 17, 2014
To be honest, the 2016 and 2017 seasons were a blessing to my bracket, because I didn’t have the option of choosing the Buckeyes to somehow be the Cinderella story and make it to the Championship. This doesn’t mean I was miraculously better at picking winners — I love an underdog story way too much to be rational.
I can't even blame my losing bracket this year on having the Buckeyes win it all... #ProbablyGoingToLose— Alexis Chassen (@Lovelybuckeye) March 14, 2016
But in 2017, I actually wasn’t the worst in the Land-Grant Holy Land bracket. Not being last has become my new (depressing) metric for success.
This will be my one shining moment, and the only time I’ve been able to gloat over my fellow writers and former managers at this here website. (And I will continue to do so for the rest of time.)
Good morning! Just wanted to point out I finished 3rd in the @Landgrant33 #marchmadness bracket -- and FIRST among the writers! #nbd pic.twitter.com/RPK1uDlXZo— Alexis Chassen (@Lovelybuckeye) April 4, 2017
And, when Chris Holtmann pulled off an impressive first season as head coach in 2018, and the Buckeyes were suddenly back in the dance, I yet again made the mistake of thinking, “If there’s ever going to be a year they pull it off, it’s this one!” (Narrator: They did not.)
I've never *not* picked the Buckeyes to win the tournament any year they've been in -- I have won very little money from my brackets, but apparently I'm loyal af— Alexis Chassen (@Lovelybuckeye) January 23, 2018
We are getting ready for the 2019 NCAA Tournament, and the Ohio State Buckeyes are once again getting their shot to break my heart. I filled out my bracket late-Wednesday night and began logically telling myself, “The Buckeyes have struggled this season, do NOT under any circumstances have them going that far.”
But as I made my picks, round by round, the homer inside of me spoke louder than logic, “If you pick them and they win, you’ll definitely win because no one else will have them going to the Final Four.”
Yes, my friends. My name is Alexis Chassen, and in 2019, I have the Buckeyes in the Final Four. They don’t call it March Madness for nothing. And, apparently, I am a gluten for punishment — which includes admitting I’ve made this pick publicly.