Top 10 people you meet during March Madness

1. The know-it-all
Did you know 34.5 percent of 14-seeded teams which score more than 4 points in the first 2 minutes and 46 seconds of the second half win 54 percent of their games if they’re wearing the color orange and the third quarter starts no later than 5:12 p.m.? No, we probably didn’t because a) who in their right mind knows that? and b) you definitely made that up. Don’t try to ask these know-it-alls a simple question — an innocent query about the current score will most likely lead to an unwelcomed set of predictions about the projected 2020 NBA Draft order and a detailed analysis of what your mother ate for lunch yesterday.

2. The bracket-obsessed
These individuals are most commonly found cheering for the number 16 seed North Central Africa State University because there’s nothing like a good upset, right? So what if they’re surrounded by fans of the opposing team? All that matters is life, liberty and the pursuit of the perfect bracket. The bracket-obsessed fan probably has twelve ESPN bracket apps, a high anxiety level and zero friends left. They’re frequently spotted screaming at completely inappropriate times, scheming about what they’ll do when they win a million dollars from their perfect bracket and proclaiming their love for tiny symmetrical charts. The bracket-obsessed fan goes hand-in-hand with the know-it-all.

3. The bandwagon fan
Bandwagon fans love a good Cinderella story. Though they may try to tell you that they’ve been “rooting for this team since December” because they “knew the boys had it in them,” odds are bandwagoners probably didn’t know this team existed until they accidentally picked them to make the Elite Eight in their brackets. (i.e. “I always knew Dayton was the best team in Ohio! What’s a Buckeye?”) Also, don’t be fooled by the shirt they’re wearing in support of their “lifelong favorite team” — though it may look vintage, eBay rush shipping and some bleach work wonders for quick and easy DIY clothing aging.

4. The “clueless” fan
In an attempt to at humility, this fan will probably tell you he or she picked a bracket without any thought and he or she is just watching the games because there’s nothing else to do. In reality, this is a façade. This fan is well-read, well-versed, very knowledgeable and very likely to be the person to have achieved the perfect bracket. Upon winning, this person will act surprised and you’ll act like you don’t want to punch him or her in the face. This is the March Madness equivalent to the person who tells you that he or she totally “didn’t study for that test” then does two letter grades better than you. Ugh.

5. The actually clueless fan
Not to be confused with the “clueless” fan, this fan is lacking facetious undertone and actually knows nothing. This one’s rooting for the team with the prettiest jerseys, the best looking players and the mascot that sort of looks like a funny animated character they saw in a movie once. He or she will ask you what the score is when he’s surrounded by televisions, and was likely shocked to learn U.Va. is actually doing well this year.

6. The die-hard fan
The die-hard fan redefines the limits of appropriate face paint use. He or she doesn’t wear one foam finger, but two. Real hair? No time for that, an orange and blue wig will do. Six T-shirts sewn together with a personal supportive hashtag is the only acceptable top to wear, and don’t even get them started about the full-body spandex morph suit. Don’t stand too close to this fan, because odds are they haven’t washed any of their clothing because they’re superstitious. He or she will probably try to account for the odor by telling you that they’re just trying to get as close to the players as she can. If the players are sweating, the fan must too. Note: bring deodorant to the viewing party.

7. The fair-weather fan
When the going gets tough…this fan is out of there in a second. He is only into it when he realizes his bracket doesn’t actually suck and it’s warm enough to leave his couch to make it to Boylan. This one can be found watching only U.Va. games, spending the entire game playing Candy Crush, cheering twenty seconds later than everyone else because he was playing Candy Crush, and actually cheering because he beat a level in Candy Crush rather than because of the game.

8. The rowdy fan
Said fan probably missed the lesson on inside voices in kindergarten. The bar becomes her personal fraternity party/boxing ring hybrid, complete with the lack of concern for personal space and the tendency to massage the nearest set of shoulders like they’re gearing up to fight. The rowdy fan couldn’t care less if she knows you or not — no person within a 10-mile radius is exempt from the in-your-face cheering and characteristic lack of social awareness. Once, a fan of this type tried to chest-bump me when I wasn’t paying attention and I was essentially body-slammed into the floor. All’s fair in love and March Madness.

9. The overly enthusiastic fan
They’ve been waiting for this day “literally their entire lives” (or, since last March). There’s no place they’d rather be than “on this barstool RIGHT NOW with all of my BEST FRIENDS during the BEST TIME OF THE YEAR.” There’s often clapping, squealing, and if you close your eyes it’s almost like you’re at sorority bid day. These guys probably really wanted to be cheerleaders in high school and will probably acquire early-onset face wrinkles from smiling so much.

10. The social media-obsessed fan
UVA JoeHarris AnyoneWithATwitter World #I’mWatchingTheGame #ButNotReally #BecauseI’mOnMyPhone #INeedEveryoneToKnowILikeBasketball #Sports #OMG #WeScored #WeScoredAgain #NowTheyScored #BasketballIsGreat #TagsForLikes #Here’sALinkToMyInstagramOfMeWatchingTheGame. Reasons why no one is favoriting your tweets/liking your Instagrams/liking your Facebook statuses: they’re actually watching the game. Take note.

Published March 23, 2014 in Life

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