2015 Update I

March Madness 2015 Update I

March 25, 2015

Locomotive Breath

Upsetting Kentucky on the minds of all

Can the train be stopped? Not even Cross-eyed Mary thinks so. But pundits be damned. Hard to criticize the Kentucky Wildcats this year. But Î will try, despite upsetting our constituency, namely the 48% of you who took them in the pool. At least the majority
of the rest of you have more sense than the rest of the world. Come on people. Cecil Beaton once said, “Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the common place, the slaves of the ordinary. And donʼt bet on Kentucky.” Yes perhaps Cecil Beaton got it right! After dispatching Hapless Manhattan or was it Hampton (didnʼt care to see the throttling), Kentucky had itself a game when the clawing 
Bearcats of Cincinnati came to town. Out rebounded and outscored in the paint, and nearly a few brawls later, Big Blue survived to continue their quest for the holy grail. Could Cincinnati have only made at least half of the two foot chippies they missed when pounding the glass, the Wildcats may have had an early exit. But nice to shoot like 30 something percent and still win. Credit to Calipari and 7 feet. Big Blue however may face a bigger beat down against the Mountaineers, a much more talented team than Huggie Bearʼs old Bearcats. West Virginia will come to play.

Shock and awe in the bottom of the Midwest bracket as Wichita State corn holed and augured the Jay Hawks. No wonder Kansas wonʼt schedule them. Think about this. Wichita State makes the final four two years ago, and was the #1 ranked team in the country last year. The back court is strong, and Fred Vanvleet an honorable star. They play team basketball and are fundamentally well coached. A #7 seed? Really?? Have we so forgotten. And beating Kansas was an upset? Let alone Indiana. They want their revenge on Kentucky. But first they must dispatch Notre Dame, a solid #3 seed, coming off an amazing year. The Shockers are for real, either way, win or lose. Best #7 seed in the nation, Unless of course, you favor Michigan State. A #7 seed? Really?? Not to be redundant, but the seeds are a bit contrived this year. Izzo should get an automatic upgrade without asking come March. He packs a very large suitcase come tournament time. Goodbye Virginia Cavaliers. And Iʼd Sooner be gone, than in an Oklahoma uniform this weekend. Oklahoma had no business beating Dayton. Flyers tanked the final five minutes. In an intriguing matchup, North Carolina State takes down Louisville, opening the door for the Spartans to reclaim their rightful seat at the final table of four.

Wisconsin in the west has played well. They are salt of the earth. Time for a Tar Heel exit. Arizona took down the Buckeyes in a great game and likely will end the Musketeer run. Zona may be the beast to end the nonsense of undefeatedness and take home the overall title. All about the match ups. Finally thereʼs Duke. Canʼt stand Duke. Canʼt, canʼt, canʼt. MayGonzaga come out of the South. Maybe this year is their year to make it to the final four. What a great program, and what a great year. I donʼt care who you play. 32-2 is 32-2. Everyone knows they are good. Every year. May this be their time.

Dream final four: Gonzaga, Michigan St, Wisconsin, Wichita St

Pundits be damned!

Players in the News

After round one (silly the NCAA calls it the second round) with 32 games completed, Wayne Hentrup led the field. Otherwise, the ladies dominated the top ten. Sign of the times. Nevertheless, there are some strong male contenders this year, including the usual guy named Smith (which one I donʼt know) and Cashman (show me the money). Throckman Wempe however was not sighted this year. Levittʼs Ledger is no more, But the madness lives on. The field is open, as is the NCAA winner, if only Big Blue, like Goliath, the bean stalkʼs Ogre giant (Fee-fi-fo-fum), the Wicked Witch of the WestPhi Slama Jama, and the Runninʼ Rebels can once again be denied history.
May the 
Miami Dolphins and the Indiana Hoosiers live on! As we head into tomorrowʼs action, the current standings after round 2 are listed below:

Second Round Leaders

1st Christine Tasheff (Are you serious? The man and defender of “the people”, Uncle Mike, cries “miscarriage of justice” after having YOU enter this year,
Itʼs been 13 years since he finished in the top ten. Mike Cleary, 2002, 5th place. (The whole history of 19 years is on the website people!) He should have thought of this long ago. What a great idea. “Iʼll just have Christine make some picks this year.” Whereʼs the ring? Unfortunately for this Wichita native, confidence is lacking by succumbing to Big Blue in the Elite Eight.
For shame, for shame, for shame!)

2nd Wayne Hentrup (Only one measly point behind! Savvy first round pickster, with but three losses, took the first round leader board by storm. Bet you wish you had taken the Sooners however. Just runner up for now.
Villanova pick was the Wildcat that bit you, so you better nurse those wounds and be ready for a wild finish!

3rd Tom Berkley (Poised to strike with 3 brackets in the top 25! Woah! Unheard of!! Hopes his fuel supply holds out. Donʼt put the brakes on!)

4th Melissa Wideman (Only one in the current top ten to take the Badgers all the way. Hails from the heart of the Queen City, downtown Cincy. Race on!)

5th Dan Bishop (Lombardi winner and local links lock down partner has a tough hill to climb to make it all the way)

6th Lebra Winiger (8th place finisher from last year resorts to a therapeutic, hands on approach and astymulates the Cardinals to bring home the birdseed. What a great town that Louisville is:) And can the Musketeers fence you to the top? The X-factor will be your silver lining)

7th Christina Hamby (Half round leader holding on to the top ten. Can you say Louis Vuitton? Iʼd swear that baby has that Zach look in his eyes)

8th Catfish (Tommy Berkley again. Need we say more? No bottom dweller here) 9th John Miles (2010 Top Ten finisher has Irish Eyes and what a final four! Check it

out people!)
10th Leslie Gabel (Stinky squints and squeals. Whatʼs that dogʼs name with the pink

bow? Chicago, Chicago. Maybe next year. Like the Cubs) Bridesmaid Bryan Pyfferoen and one of those Smith guys
Goat Skip Oliver
Last Dale Cardinal 
(The First Loser. Sorry Michelle)

Charity Update

Our March Madness Endowment Fund continues to grow in part due to interest earned and of course your donations. The fund was established years ago with proceeds from the March Madness tournament and additional outside donations. Our current fund value administered through the Warrick County Community Foundation stands at $ 47,000!!

So what exactly is this fund and why do we have it? 7 years ago when thinking about who we should give money to, in at that time, our twelfth year of charitable giving, I asked our esteemed webmaster, Gary Gurthcheff, “Who did we give money to last year?” We could not remember and it frustrated us a bit. Thus, and having served on the Warrick County Community Foundation at the time, the idea was born. This field-of-interest fund was established to benefit children and youth services in the community. Early on we had granted a couple hundred dollars from the fund, but now that it has grown so much over the years, I am happy to say this year, we have authorized a $1500 grant to be given to a local organization, small scale, called Pillow Pals, Inc. This group of ladies (headed by Brenda Lou Rusche) makes pillowcases for children to take home and keep when they have surgery or are in the hospital, a mighty fearful place. Lions and Tigers and Bears. No invaders, no dragons, no trolls! Their mission is to bring smiles and comfort to a child while he or she is hospitalized for a sickness or undergoes surgery. A homemade pillowcase is given to all and every child!! Money is used to purchase fabric, thread, and packaging supplies. Seven volunteers meet twice a month to make them. Since 2011, over 6600 pillowcases have been hand sewn and given away. All volunteers are eager to keep this wonderful experience going, knowing that it helps the child:) The money we have bestowed comes directly from the March Madness Endowment Fund, and is a grant. As our principal in the fund grows yearly, more money will be available to grant each year. The principal always stays, For good For ever, and is not spent. Thus the purpose of why we established this fund several years ago.

On the other hand, a percentage of the money you all contribute each year during our March Madness tournament is given directly to one or more charitable organizations. This year, direct recipients of our charitable contributions include the following two organizations.

United Methodist Youth Home

Since 1979, the United Methodist Youth Home has been working tirelessly towards our mission of "helping at‐risk youth become responsible and productive members of the community." We help abused, troubled, and neglected young men and women who are referred to us by caseworkers and probation officers from throughout the state of Indiana. We provide assistance to youth that might be overlooked or even forgotten without our services. We are always open, ready to welcome them, offer treatment and prepare them for a fresh start in life.

Visit the website and learn more:


Gilda’s Club of Evansville

The mission of Gilda’s Club is to ensure that all people impacted by cancer are empowered by knowledge, strengthened by action, and sustained by community. Gilda’s Club provides a place where anyone touched by cancer can laugh, cry, confront fears, share triumphs, and learn how to LIVE with cancer. It is a place where people find strength, comfort and

wisdom by sharing their experiences; a comfortable place to recognize and release the many emotions that
go along with the cancer journey. When cancer happens, it happens to the whole family and its social network; membership is equal for the person with cancer, the family member and friend.

At Gilda’s Club we recognize that social and emotional support is as essential as medical care when cancer is in the family. Beyond our Red Door you will be welcomed to our support community where we offer a variety of workshops, classes, groups, and activities in a

nonresidential, homelike setting – all FREE of charge Visit the website and learn more: www.GCEVV.ORG

Pool and Statistical Information

Unofficially, we have 473 entries. Internal auditing will allow for a final number come the end of the tournament. Needless to say, this a March Madness Tournament record number of entries!! Tops the 450 entries from 2013. Kentucky was the consensus top pick with 48% of pool entries choosing the Wildcats to win it all (a record also). Perhaps however Big Blue fans, the other Wildcats, those from Arizona may have something to say about it. Smart money is on Arizona and the 6% of you who have made that pick! In a distant second, 17% of entries chose Wisconsin to win it all. Check the website for current updates. When you click on the standings page, you can easily scroll through to find your position, and everyoneʼs picks, with brackets displayed, by clicking on the top red row which reads RK (rank), Entry Name (how you listed your pick), Info-1 (alphabetize by first name), Info-2 (alphabetize by last name), Score (current point total), etc. Final four picks and chances for you to win money are also listed. Also go to the drop down menu to see the current tournament bracket, and other options.

Best of luck in the remainder of the tournament and again thank you for participating.

If you have not mailed your entry donation and extra contributions, please do so immediately! Remit to:

John P. Morgan, MD
PO Box 1136
Newburgh, IN 47629-1136

“As a society gains the ability to limit suffering, it loses the ability to cope with what suffering remains.”

-An ironic law of reversal at work 

© Gary M. Gurtcheff 2013