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 Sweet 16 – 5 BYU 82, 1 Kansas 73
While the final seconds wound down on the clock, there was nothing Kansas could do on the floor but watch BYU dribble the last moments out.
BYU kicked the second No. 1 seed out of the tournament with its statement 82-73 victory over Kansas in the Reddit March Madness Sweet 16.
“This is something our school hasn’t seen in almost 40 years,” said BYU head coach Tom Riddle, referring to BYU’s last Elite Eight appearance in 1981. “It means a great deal to be able to share our message, which means so much to each and every one of us, on a truly national stage like this. Death to all muggles.”
Following the team’s 83-73 supremacy over Vermont in the second round, the Cougars had a full two weeks between games. Meanwhile, the rest of the second round was played last weekend. Kansas has exactly seven days from its Round of 32 game to Sweet 16 showdown.
Before Kansas played Saint Mary’s in the second round, head coach Bill Self was asked if the break would give BYU an advantage. He admitted that it would, explaining that as the little guy, the Jayhawks always have their backs against the well. It’s what they prefer, though, he said.
After losing to BYU in the Sweet 16, Self wasn’t quite as nonchalant with his disapproval.
“It’s not right,” he said, shaking his head and gritting his teeth. “I have every right to lose in the Elite Eight again, and to have it taken away from me like this, with some clearly manufactured ‘scratched disc’ crap, it’s wrong. It’s simply wrong.”
Self said he will spend the offseason trying to collect coaches who will join him in bringing a formal request for an investigation to the NCAA. When reached for comment, the NCAA laughed.
Tom Riddle has been defiant in his defense of his team and the tournament’s delay. He knows it’s not something that’s going to go away, though.
“People are always going to try to find a way to bring down the almighty and all-powerful,” he said, his cheeks and forehead beginning to throb a light blue as a uncontrollable grin spread wide across his face. “We will vanquish them, as we do all enemies, as we prove ourselves as the most dominant force in the world. Our power is growing, Cougars. Remain with me as I bring us to the end of the muggle nightmare.
“DEATH TO ALL MUGGLES!” he shouted upwards, his arms out wide and his ever-growing power evident within the room.
Later after the game, I met with Deep Stroke, my anonymous contact within the BYU athletics department whose name is an allusion to BYU’s three-point shooting and nothing else. When I spoke with him last, he told me that the tournament director, /u/JaniSWFC, was clean in the tournament’s rescheduling but left with some ominous questions about who scratched it and why.
Between our meetings, I spent some time pondering his proposals and came back with some answers: it was Tom Riddle with a hammer in the bedroom.
“No, you dingus, this isn’t Clue,” Deep Stroke said, reprimanding me as I shook my head vigorously to act like he didn’t hurt my feelings when really it did sting a little bit, because I worked hard on that and I never got the approval I felt like I deserved as a child, so it would have really meant a lot to me if he had said he was proud of my effort even if it wasn’t that good of an answer, or at least acknowledge that I have to be at least worth something to even be in this position in the first place. “But you’re getting closer. Linking Tom Riddle is the right direction. Keep heading that way.”
With that, he lifted his cloak above his nose, promptly turned and vanished behind a corner, leaving me emotionally stunted.
BYU will battle No. 3 seed Kentucky for a spot in the Final Four on Monday at 7 p.m. EST in Houston. If the Cougars were to win, it would be their first-ever time in the National Semifinals.
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.