The whole international pandemic thing that’s going down forced the 2020 March Madness to be cancelled. Or so you thought.
The NCAA is skipping this year’s tournament at all levels, but /r/CollegeBasketball has sponsored its own alternative Men’s Division I tournament: Reddit March Madness. Streamed exclusively on YouTube and executed with a college basketball video game from almost 15 years ago, this year’s March Madness is sure to be unpredictable and full of really dumb turnovers.
Nothing But Nylon is providing the exclusive* coverage of the event from the bedroom of our headquarters. Don’t miss any of the real* quotes and bone-breaking analysis that you’ll only find here because of how exclusive* this content is.
* = this means you can’t sue me
Reddit March Madness First Round – 3 Michigan State 82, 14 Little Rock 66
While Ohio State and Akron put on a show that captivated hundreds of people using the quarantine as an excuse to live in their mom’s basement, Michigan State and Little Rock also “played.”
The Spartans let the Trojans have the ball sometimes and even gave them a few points. That’s about it, though.
Michigan State hammered Little Rock, 82-66, in a strong performance to open the Reddit March Madness.
“It was good to see the generosity our players showed Little Rock,” head coach and part-time garden gnome Tom Izzo said. “A few of our guys gave the Little Rock players words of encouragement even after they embarrassed themselves live on YouTube for everyone, even their crushes, to see. Sportsmanship is at the core of our program.”
An example of the humanity the Spartans showed their similarly-nicknamed “competition” happened late in the second half. Already up 69-49 with fewer than six minutes to play in the game, Thomas Kithier received a pass under the basket. For reasons unknown, his defender refused to follow him, and no help came. He was alone at the rim, but like the benign ruler the Spartans are, he dribbled out the shot clock standing in place.
Kithier did finish the layup right before the expiration of the shot clock, but it wasn’t meant in an offensive fashion.
“I was thinking, ‘Wow, these guys really suck. Do they know how this sport works?”” he said. “I didn’t want to make things any worse than they already were, and they looked so cute with their little uniforms, running around and pretending like they were in the game. My competitive instincts kicked in, and I had to go up for that shot, but it’ll weigh on my conscious for a long time.”
Little Rock head coach Darrell Walker, who looks like he wears pants a size too big and is constantly having to pull them back over his hips, appreciated Michigan State’s compassion.
“I told my guys to work on the skills we’ve been covering in practice,” he explained. “This last week, we did a lot of work on dribbling between our legs, and I felt like I saw some real improvement in that area from most of our team. We were in no way, shape or form prepared to play Michigan fucking State.”
Michigan State will take on the winner of No. 6 seed Virginia and No. 11 seed ETSU (Friday at 7:30 p.m. EST). Be sure to follow along with Nothing But Nylon’s comprehensively exclusive* coverage of the 2020 Reddit March Madness.