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 Second Round – 3 Seton Hall 96, 11 Texas Tech 92
After never being able to get over the hump, trailing by a handful of points for much of the second half, Texas Tech lucked its way into an opening in the final seconds of the game.
Chris Clarke nailed a deep jumper that would have been worth an extra point if he had any amount of court awareness, bringing the Red Raiders to within three, 95-92, with 13.2 seconds remaining. Clarke fouled Myles Powell moments later, putting the Seton Hall superstar at the line for a one-and-one.
“I thought, ‘Surely, Myles will knock this one down and we can get to celebrating,'” Seton Hall head coach Kevin Willard said he thought to himself as Powell was stepping up to the charity stripe. “This would be very uncharacteristic of Seton Hall to screw this up, so I couldn’t even envision a scenario in which Myles missed that shot. I just couldn’t see it.”
Well, he did, and it opened the door wide open for Texas Tech.
“I have already given myself 40 lashes for my mistake,” Myles Powell said after the game, holding a bullwhip in one hand and a wooden cross in the other. “If I must, I will die for my sins.”
Texas Tech rushed the ball down the floor, and after two very quick, very close passes between Kevin McCullar and Jahmi’us Ramsey, McCullar jacked up a triple from the middle of the floor with less than five ticks to play.
“My heart was in my stomach,” said Ramsey, a 42.6 percent three-point shooter who elected to give the ball back to McCullar, a 28.6 percent three-point shooter, during his team’s final possession. “Not sure where my brain was, though.”
The ball clanked the back of the iron, Seton Hall forward and coolest-named player in America Sandro Mamukelashvili ripped down his 12th rebound of the night, and the Pirates marauded to a 96-92 victory.
“Ho boy,” Texas Tech head coach Chris Beard said with a chuckle, adjusting his pants at the waist. “We sure fucked that one up, huh?”
While it’s hard to disagree with Beard, it was a weird game overall. First off, to see Texas Tech score in the 90s is a sign that either the world is ending or peace is upon us, but either way, something is changing. Even stranger: the Red Raiders gave up almost 100 points. Now I know something isn’t right.
Jared Rhoden, who won the Player of the Game distinction with 18 points on 8-of-14 shooting from the field and six assists, was blown away with how the game unfolded.
“It was a crazy game to be a part of. It was an offensive explosion from both teams,” Rhoden said, using his hands to illustrate things blowing up. “It was like, BOOM! And then like, BOOM! And, and then, BOOM! You know? It was like that. A lot of booms.”
Seton Hall will be making its triumphant return back to the Sweet 16 that has been 20 years in the making. The Pirates will play the winner of No. 7 seed Providence and No. 15 seed North Dakota State in Houston for the South Regional Semifinal. Texas Tech will play no one. Its season, virtual and otherwise, is over.
“I guess we don’t have to worry about V.D. after all,” Beard said.
Be sure to follow along with Nothing But Nylon’s comprehensively exclusive* coverage of the 2020 Reddit March Madness.
Part of the proceeds from the sale of each #RedditMarchMadness t-shirt will go toward helping those in the basketball community affected by COVID-19. We will be partnering with non-profits like the Give and Go Foundation on the effort. If you know of a worthy group that could use some extra funds, please reach out.