The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament….which is also informally known and branded as NCAA March Madness….is a single-elimination tournament played each spring in the United States…. which currently features 68 college basketball teams from the Division I level of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)….to determine the national championship. The tournament was created in 1939 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches….and was the idea of Ohio State University’s coach Harold Olsen. The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is mostly during March….and has become one of the most famous annual sporting events in the United States.
The tournament teams include champions from 32 Division I conferences….which receive automatic bids….along with 36 teams which are awarded at-large berths….as these teams are chosen by an NCAA selection committee….then announced in a nationally televised event on the Sunday preceding the “First Four” play-in games….as this program is currently held in Dayton, Ohio, and dubbed Selection Sunday. The 68 teams are divided into four regions and organized into a single-elimination “bracket”….which pre-determined….when a team wins a game….which team it will face next. Each team is “seeded” or ranked within its region from 1 to 16. After the First Four, the tournament occurs during the course of three weekends….at pre-selected neutral sites across the United States. Teams, seeded by rank, proceed through a single-game elimination bracket beginning with a “first four” consisting of 8 low-seeded teams playing in 4 games for a position in the first round the Tuesday and Wednesday before the first round begins….which is a first round consisting of 64 teams playing in 32 games over the course of a week….with the “Sweet Sixteen” and “Elite Eight” rounds the next week and weekend, respectively….and for the last weekend of the tournament….the ever popular “Final Four” round. The Final Four is usually played during the first weekend of April….as these four teams, one from each region (East, South, Midwest, and West), compete in a pre-selected location for the national championship.
The best part about this 1985 Selection Sunday Show on ESPN is that it features two ESPN broadcasting legends in Bob Ley and Dick Vitale….who are both still behind the mike at ESPN today in 2018…..which is a mere 33 years later….providing evidence of their legendary status….which also makes this piece just another “nugget of gold” in our treasure chest of memories here at ImaSportsphile.