Sweet 16 superlatives break down the teams
March, 27, 2013
By D'Arcy Maine | ESPN.com
Getty ImagesWhich of these sweet teams most deserves your March/April loyalty?Having trouble deciding which team to root for in the Sweet 16? You’re not alone. We decided to investigate the remaining NCAA tournament teams and hand out our (minimally basketball-related) class superlatives, in hopes of making your quandary a little easier.
With apologies in advance to Duke fans, here’s our region-by-region breakdown:
MidwestMost profitable team: Louisville
Forbes Magazine recently named Louisville the most valuable basketball program in the nation because of a $24.6 million profit margin this season alone. So even if the Cardinals don’t live up to the expectations the rest of the postseason, at least their fans know they have the most valuable hoops team in the country and a countless number of obvious Rick Pitino jokes at their disposal, and that they still had a heck of a better season than Kentucky.
Most likely to get a dirty look on campus for wearing adidas: Oregon
That’s what happens when your school is basically owned by Nike. Co-founder Phil Knight is an Oregon alumnus and has famously donated hundreds of millions of dollars to the school during the past several decades. Subsequently, the Ducks are famous for their Nike apparel and often showcase some of the company’s latest designs. Say what you want about the ethics of the company’s affiliation with the school, but rest assured Oregon easily will have the best Final Four uniform if it advances that far. So there’s that.
Best school to attend if blue and yellow just aren’t your colors: Michigan State
This one really should need no explanation.
Bro-iest student body: Duke
We could talk about Duke’s academic achievements or its storied Gothic-inspired campus, but we know how most of you feel about the Blue Devils. Sure, many of the school’s students and alumni probably will be your (and our) future bosses, but that’s all the more reason to take this opportunity while we can.
With Duke ranked No. 4 on The Princeton Review’s list for political apathy and No. 2 on its worst town-university relations list -- and making appearances on several national lists for the prominent Greek life scene -- we just get the sense that people with last names for first names go around campus doing secret handshakes and popping their collars in unison while walking to their Jeep Wranglers that they got from their parents for high school graduation.
We’re sure not everyone on campus is an elitist, arrogant, obnoxious, hard-partying, lacrosse-playing frat dude -- but it’s a lot more fun to assume they are. Carry on, bros!
WestMost likely to accept you: Wichita State
Who doesn’t like acceptance? Unfortunately for the Shockers, this is more about their acceptance rate into the school than anything else (although we’re sure they love and appreciate everyone all the same). With a 93.8 percent acceptance rate, according to U.S. News and World Report, WSU accepts just about everyone. Apologies if you were rejected from the school. But, on the plus side, that’s apparently very tough to do, so good for you.
Streeter Lecka/Getty ImagesThese colors don't run. They accept. (And accept and accept ...)
However, while the application process isn’t particularly selective, a whopping 88 percent of students told collegeprowler.com that they would attend the school if they had to repeat the whole process. That’s the highest percentage we saw in the category.
Soon-to-be-adopted favorite team by every disgruntled Eagles/76ers/Villanova/Temple fan: La Salle
We’re guessing this superlative probably isn’t appealing to anyone outside the Philadelphia area. It’s well known the city loves its sports teams. Unfortunately, most residents typically aren't Explorers fans. In fact, most probably root against them during Big Five play. However, in a very down year for Philly’s teams, expect most of these unhappy fans to jump right on the La Salle bandwagon. Until the Explorers lose, anyway. We’ll just hope the fans don’t start booing them or throwing things before that.
Best school to find a pool party: Arizona
If you’re looking for a school where you can have raucous parties in a pool with thousands of your closest, scantily clad friends and your parents don’t define Rehab in Las Vegas as a proper education, U of A is the place for you.
The most known party, called Star Pass because of its location at an off-campus apartment complex of the same name, even has an online registration for the event and a shuttle bus to and from the school. We would post a YouTube video from past parties, but we’re fairly certain that would result in our immediate termination.
Now we know why both Nicole Richie and Kourtney Kardashian attended. Not bad for a school that’s not even considered the biggest party school in the state. We see you, ASU!
Most likely to identify college affiliation through spelling it through chant: Ohio State
The classic "O-H/I-O" chant isn’t reserved for just sporting events; alumni reportedly identify themselves to fellow Buckeyes nationwide by spelling out their state. We would be a lot more impressed if they went to Connecticut or Massachusetts or Mississippi. Four letters? Weak.
Then again, we would much rather have this than alumni calling it THE Ohio State University. Carry on, Buckeyes. Carry on.
SouthBest college town: Kansas (Lawrence)
Kansas students love Lawrence, and Lawrence residents love KU. A mainstay on almost every "best college town" list, it’s known for restaurants, bars and a trendy downtown scene. The town lives for its basketball team, and Jayhawks apparel all but lines the streets. It's also known as "Larryville," and we’re just going to guess that "Rock Chalk Jayhawk" chants break out approximately every 15.3 seconds and confetti is thrown in celebration for all daily accomplishments.
Student body most likely to tell you they go to a "Public Ivy" school: Michigan
AP Photo/Tony DingWe get it. You're all geniuses.
In 1985, an admissions counselor named eight schools he deemed worthy public-school counterparts to the Ivy League schools. Michigan was one of said schools. And its students have been bragging about the distinction ever since. We get it, UM, you’re smart (as evidenced by your decision to not pay private-school tuition). Blah, blah, blah. Now stop telling us before we start rooting for Ohio State in spite.
Best school to be a jock, not study and get your party on: Florida
Sorry, Tim Tebow, but UF is a legendary party school. A perennial contender on all of the major party school lists and making The Princeton Review’s latest edition for "Jock Schools," "Lots and lots of beer" and "Schools where students study the least," this place sounds like a dream for the average college athlete. Feel like attending college without having to do all those pesky college activities like hitting the books and going to class? Welcome to Gainesville!
Interestingly, the party doesn’t stop after graduation day. Far from it. Grandparents.com just named Gainesville the best college town to retire to. Fun for all ages!
Best dorms: Florida Gulf Coast
It is impossible to top on-campus housing with beach views. A photo of junior forward Chase Fieler’s dorm view of a beach complete with palm trees and white sand circulated on the Web last week, sparking the ire of students from every other college in America.
Sure, the school has only a 45 percent six-year graduation rate (that is not a typo), but we can totally see why. These kids have better things to do ... like taking advantage of the free water sports available to them. We would argue spending time on personal watercraft and lying on the beach instead of joining the real world might actually make these kids the smartest ones of us all.
Looking at the school pictures makes us really think we did college all wrong.
EastMost basketball-crazy student body (that still has no idea what its team nickname means): Indiana
Saying the state of Indiana is obsessed with basketball is like saying Kim Kardashian loves media attention. It’s such a no-brainer, it’s almost an understatement. The state and the IU community worship the storied program, and have proved one sellout crowd and one body-painted fan at a time how supportive they are of the team’s recent resurgence.
While the students are assuredly enthusiastic about the team, we feel pretty confident that the vast majority has no idea what a Hoosier is. And seeing as there is no official mascot of the team, we’re not sure anyone knows.
There are several theories about the term’s origin, but nothing is proved. Our favorite idea involves a group of brute fighters in the state in the 19th century: The phrase came from "Whose ear?" because these fighters regularly LOST EARS in fights and they were discovered the next day in a tavern. Who knew Indiana was so hard-core? More importantly, why aren’t the IU students making that story more well-known? Instant street cred. Something a school known for red-and-white clown pants could probably benefit from.
Most likely to have an alumnus cover it in the tournament: Syracuse
Syracuse has a great journalism program. And its students and alumni never pass up an opportunity to share this with you. There are approximately 3495874957 members of the mainstream sports media who credit the Newhouse School for their start. Graduates include Bob Costas, Ian Eagle, Marv Albert, Mike Tirico and Sean McDonough.
SU also should be given the "most likely to complain about this post because they think they could write it better" title.
Best school if you’re a member of House of Pain: Marquette
Marquette is a Jesuit school in Wisconsin known for strict underage drinking policies and freezing winters. While that sentence is probably a welcome sight to the school’s administration, it’s not that great for the sake of this list.
That said, when the song "Jump Around" plays for home men’s basketball games, there is no better place to be. Alumnus Rick Smith, donned in a full suit, takes a literal interpretation of the song and, well, jumps around. Because of the crowd’s reception to Rick, the song has become a part of the arena’s regular rotation. We’re sure House of Pain has to be grateful for the steady royalties income.
Hardest school at which to make it to class: Miami
It’s all about The U! With the gorgeous beaches, the South Beach night life and the incredible weather year-round, we’re fairly certain we would never make it inside an academic building. And as it turns out, based on past NCAA allegations, many of the football and basketball players never do.