2018 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge

It’s that time of year again! By which I mean, the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to enter the eleventh annual Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge! All right, so last year you had a chance to enter the tenth annual challenge, which was kind of similar. But whether or not you tried it last year, here’s an all new roll of the dice to see how well you can predict the outcome of this year’s U.S. college men’s basketball tournament. If you want to participate, go to the Econbrowser group at ESPN, do some minor registering to create a free ESPN account if you haven’t used that site before, and fill in your bracket before Thursday at noon!

12 thoughts on “2018 Econbrowser NCAA tournament challenge

  1. Moses Herzog

    Being the greedy, selfish, self-centered, narcissistic person that I am, the first question entered my mind on this NCAA bracket challenge (other than “How the H.E.L.L. have I followed this blog off and on for 9 years and never knew about THIS!?!?!?!?!?!”) is what the hell do we win if we get the high score??

    Before you answer this philosophical question of prize awards Menzie, remember it’s very crucial as an Economics prof to teach everyone you interact with the importance of strong incentives in the free market. A Wisconsin University coffee mug?? Wisconsin Badger starter jackets?? A free paperback copy of Thomas Piketty’s “Capital In the 21st Century”?? A FREE copy of Andrew Lo’s “Adaptive Markets”?? A weekend date in Manhattan with Kerry Cohen Kaperstein?? A private meet-up at the sauna with Morgan Stanley’s Katy Zhao?? (Adult toys optionally included, I’m a gentleman after all, that’s Katy’s final choice). Notice how these are getting better as my imagination kicks into gear and I got the salivary glands going now Menzie.

    Slurp slurp https://goo.gl/images/3FUuoB Katy, I’m ready, I been practicing my Roy Orbison growl just for you:

    I am a humble man, and miss the days that Abe Lemons, Billy Tubbs, and Jerry Tarkanian roamed the courtsides of America. Fellow bracket competitors—BITE ME, SUCKERRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRS!!!!!!!

  2. Moses Herzog

    This look back at NCAA basketball history brought to you by “Goofball Degenerate Middle-Aged Slackers R Us” LLC where I am Emeritus Chairman:


    Billy Tubbs was unfairly known as a loudmouth, And gained such a bad reputation with game officials (showing them up for what they truly were when they made a bad call) that it biased the entire college official/referee apparatus against him and followed him to his next job at Texas Christian University where the officials couldn’t bear to watch a scrappy coach succeed on his own laurels. What many people don’t know, is BIlly Tubbs was a tough SOB (and I say tough SOB in the most complimentary and affectionate way). He was at one time an avid jogger and was very nearly killed by a reckless driver—and lived to tell the tale, but rarely discussed it or tried to “get mileage out of it”:

    What those college referees apparently didn’t give a crap about was that Billy was a stand-up guy (with a Masters degree in Education, rare for coaches of that era) who genuinely cared about his players, and checked up on them long after they left his team. Some of the best memories of my teen years, was watching stuff like this—you’ll notice it repeats on a loop in the video:

    I should add as a footnote: Ed Hightower was renowned as the absolute worst referee in the game in that era, mid ’80s to mid ’90s, and probably one of the worst basketball referees in the entire history of the game.

    1. efcdons

      Oh man, in 2015 when Hunter hit that deep three to beat Baylor and his dad the coach fell off the stool he was sitting on due to his broken ankle was like the best GA college basketball moment in the last few years. Which is actually a bit sad.


  3. 2slugbaits

    Confessions of a former men’s college BB fan. I used to love men’s college basketball, but I quit watching a couple years ago. The sport is hopelessly corrupt, not to mention insufferably long after the commercial breaks and TV timeouts. OTOH, the women’s game is pretty entertaining. It doesn’t have the raw athleticism (or hot dog factor), but the women players seem to be more disciplined in a lot of the fundamentals.

    1. Moses Herzog

      I would say about 85% of your comments on this site I agree with (not that my opinion would be like waiting for white smoke from the papal conclave or something). Just saying I find you to be a very rational man the vast majority of the time.

      That being said, it’s important to note, that the women’s game (and yes I enjoy women’s basketball also, partly for substantive reasons and partly for more perv like reasons) gets most or all of its funding from the other corrupt NCAA sports. Not to mention the fact that “insufferably long after the commercial breaks and TV timeouts.” would apply to ANY televised sport or even radio broadcast sport that is played under Earth’s Sun.

      In fact (although I do not know myself) if you can show any numbers/data (not put out by the NCAA itself) that the women’s game has less TV commercial breaks (as measured by TIME, not money) than the men’s game—I would love to see it. Very sad to say the year is not 1955, and these people who participate in the women’s game (and get their salaries from the corrupt men’s games) are not “pure as the driven snow”

      1. 2slugbaits

        Fair points. I don’t have any quantitative studies comparing the game times, but I would note that I don’t see anywhere near the number of intentional fouls (although they aren’t usually called intentional by the refs) that you find in the men’s game. The last four minutes of the men’s game (and NBA games) seem to take an eternity. You also don’t see nearly as many “one and done” players.


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