March Madness is Upon Us! by Karen Salkin
I'm thrilled to report that March Madness started this week.
I don't know if you know this about me, but I'm a major sports fan! And the March Madness college basketball tournament is one of my favorite events of each year!
There are always so many exciting games in the tourney - a lot of them even come down to the final shot, which is uber exciting.
But it can all be very stressful for the hometown fans. So I suggest that we all wear our ClearClub night guards, during our waking hours this time, while we're watching the games, to prevent us from biting our nails when the games get down to the wire!
I also suggest that everyone watch March Madness. For those fans who love basketball but only the NBA, who don’t bother with college ball, you’re really missing out. Where do you think most of the future NBA stars come from? And even the kids who don’t go pro when they graduate play their hearts out now. It’s great to see guys who know that this will be it for their basketball careers, but play for the love of the game, rather than to show their skills off to get drafted into the NBA.
I’ve been fascinated by this college basketball tournament for a couple of decades now. I’m probably the only person in the country, (outside of the commentators, but they get paid for that) who watches every second of the tournament; I don't speed through the games (except for commercials, of course). I’m sure that most of you think I’m crazy, and I am—crazy about basketball!!!
So many people look forward to March Madness all year. The excitement of it all doesn't just involve the players—it’s also the coaches, cheerleaders, student body in general, fans, and even the bands and mascots!!! The NCAA tourney is so important to college life. And for most of these players, who won't go pro after school, it's the opportunity of a lifetime. Even for the athletes who don’t win, nor even make it all the way to the prestigious Final Four, it’s an experience that stays with them for life.
March Madness is truly a lesson in enjoying the journey. Sixty-eight teams are in the college basketball tournament, which means that sixty-seven will leave broken-hearted. But I always hope that the inevitable loss doesn’t diminish the fun the players, coaches, families, students, and fans have in getting there. Just making it into the tournament is a major achievement! I love watching the teams go nuts when they hear their names announced on Selection Sunday! Their joy always puts a smile on my face and literally brings tears to my eyes.
Speaking of Selection Sunday, this year's tournament is sadly historic because it's the last time we'll see Duke's Coach K in it! We didn't have that penultimate pleasure last year because, shockingly, Duke didn't make it back then, so this one is extra-special on that front, as well.
Always special is getting to hear what the hilarious analyst, Charles Barkley, has to say for the entire duration of the event!!! His comments are worth the price of admission alone!
As you can tell, I’m mad about March Madness!
But I do always feel sort-of bad for coaches; so much of their lives must just be worrying about their teams and games, which most likely gives them extra headaches, and causes them to clench their teeth, and not just at night! So to help with all that, I hope they're using our ClearClub night guards, which guard against all the teeth-grinding that tension can cause. They have enough headaches from strategizing the games—they don't need any more from bruxism!
Let me end by congratulating all the college men who are playing in this historic tournament. And remind them to just be proud and happy that they had the experience, win or lose. I send major kudos to all concerned.
Now please excuse me while I pop in my ClearClub night guard to go watch today's games without having all my teeth-gnashing affect me this year!