Okay sports fans, it's that time of year again. Time to fill out brackets and watch games and suffer heartbreak and feel the rise of hope. Time to believe in the impossible - until your team plays North Carolina or Duke.
I write this from the press room at the Verizon Center in Washington, DC, where Xavier has just disassembled Georgia and Purdue is wiping the court with Baylor. It's the same setup as the last time I did this - the Wizards' practice court is converted into a press work room and interview room. Big tables, lots of people with laptops, expensive food, cheap snacks and lots of waiting.
The excitement is actually on the court - especially if you are a basketball fan. But here in the press room it is all about pouring over stacks of stats, trying to produce audio reports, watching three different games at once and putting up with BS from editors.
But it is a chance to get out of the office. For that I am deeply grateful.
I got the chance to talk to some Belmont fans - their team, the Bruins, plays Duke in the first round. Belmont could be the new word for bye bye in a couple hours. But the fans made the trip from Nashville. One of them - a music business major - said that while Vanderbilt might be better known, his school will give it's best.
I fear it will not be enough. Duke is a second seed, and former champion. Belmont is where????????
And so the games will most likely go to the better teams - Duke, North Carolina, Memphis, Tennessee, Xavier, UCLA. But Cinderella has to try on the shoe anyway. Back to work.