The NCAA loves college basketball tournaments almost as much as they love not paying student athletes
. The week before March Madness (the 68-team tournament that completely destroys office productivity) a series of tournaments takes place in a week called "Championship Week." Think of these extra tournaments as foreplay. They're just something you have to get through before you can enjoy the real action.
Championship Week differs from the March Madness tournament in that teams play against the other schools in their conference (think Pac-12, SEC, etc.), with the winner receiving an automatic bid into The Big Dance
. For many smaller schools with hopes of becoming this year's Cinderella story
, the only way they can advance into March Madness is to win their conference's championship.
On the other end of the spectrum, high-profile schools' Championship Week performances won't
effect them getting into March Madness, but it could impact their seed. There are four #1 seeds in the March Madness tournament, and the higher you rank, the easier your schedule. For teams like #1 Kansas, #2 Michigan St., and #3 Villanova, winning their respective conferences will practically guarantee them a #1 seed come the Madness. Keep track of all the conference winners right here
It's time for you to pretend you've been following college basketball all year, because the Good Old Sport March Madness Tournament
has arrived! Brackets aren't available until after Selection Sunday (3/13), but register now using this link
(the password is "coach") so you don't miss out! The winner gets a $100 American Express Gift Card
, which is just as good as cash money
. To enter you'll need to create a CBS.com account, which literally takes less time than it took you to read this sentence. It'll be worth it when you turn your winning gift card into a hundred one-dollar bills so you can give yourself a Cartman-style money shower
in front of your very jealous friends.