...and it came to pass, in the gray days of March, that the Lord looked down on his American people and said:
"Hey, word up, there's nothin' happenin' down there. This is neither spring, nor winter, neither hot nor cold. It is not good to have man living in these doldrums of halfway between.
"So let us shaketh things up a bit. Let us make of March a special time, that shall be henceforth known as 'Madness.'* At this time, men shall procure a roundball, made of leather, filled with the breath of the wind, and shall bring it to a 94-foot hardwood court. There, they shall string cotton beneath a wide orange cylinder of metal, one at each end of the court, at a height of ten feet from the floor. And groups of men shall band together, and shall make it a mission to launch the roundball through the cylinder, so that it makes a special music through the cotton cords. And yea, verily, when the roundball passeth through the cotton net, there shall be rejoicing and great jubilation in many lands.
"They shall do this in the city; they shall do this in the country. they shall do this in the small town, in the places time forgot. They shall do this in the Ivy League and in the Midwest Athletic Conference, on the Atlantic coast and in the heartlands; in the Mountain West and the Pacific lowlands; and the people shall behold it and marvel.
"And let us make this an annual feast, a time when small men can dream big dreams. Let us celebrate and rejoice, and make merry, when the Big Dancing begins. And let March be forever blessed with this glorious festival of team colors and cheerleaders, slammin' and jammin', 'diaper dandies' and buzzer-beaters...to bring joy and craziness to all my people."
And God saw it...and it was very good.
Leading up to the Big Dance, the Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament starts today, with Dem Wildcats playing at noon Eastern, and Dem Wolverines playing at 2:30. They BOTH deserve to go dancing, but...first things first.
Let there be Roundball!!!!!!!
(*Yes, we are aware that the IHSA claims that Illinois High School Basketball was the original "March Madness," and we have no doubt whatsoever that this is true, as we can remember this term from way before it was used for the NCAA Tournament. We have merely exercised a little poetic license here, and trust that the reader will be accommodating.)