Grading the March Madness Underdogs - Part 5

March 17, 2016 | Comments (0) | by Rich Funk

Welcome back for Part 5 of our comprehensive report cards of the March Madness underdogs. We tackled the 12 seeds through the 15 seeds. Now we take a look at the NCAA tournament equivalent of getting a participation medal in the 16 seeds, since there's no goddamn chance any of these teams will win. I know that every year people are all "BUT IT COULD HAPPEN!" and yeah, technically it can. But it won't. Trust me on this one. The day a 16 seed upsets a 1 seed is the day I'll eat a shoe. My grading will be especially harsh because we need to keep these 16 seeds down.

As before we will be grading on the following criteria.
  • Nickname - Does it make sense? Is it badass or lame?
  • Notable Alumni - I'm just picking one. It's not quantity, it's quality here.
  • Indigenous Bears Nearby - This is pretty self-explanatory
  • Resume Prestige - Does this school look good on your resume?
  • Proximity to my house - Can I drive there, or do I need to get on a god damn plane?
  • Name Brevity - This is serious. I have no time for your 9 syllable school. This isn't Serbia.
  • Elevation Above Sea Level - The higher the better, because... melting ice caps or something.
And awaaaaaayyyyyy we go!

Austin Peay

Where the fuck is this? 
Austin Pee (sorry, I had to) is in Clarksville, Tennessee. They play in the Ohio Valley Conference. I knew a girl in college with the nickname 'The Ohio Valley'. HEY-OOO!!!!! (I didn't)

1. Nickname - The Governors? Maybe if you had Jesse Ventura and AHHNOLD running around in their beefcake prime this would be cool. Now all I picture is the stupid Snidely Whiplash bozo that is their logo.  D

2. Notable Alumni - Bob Harper, fitness trainer on NBC's "The Biggest Loser," To quote their website, "Harper has become one of the most credible and sought-after motivational experts on television." Fantastic! F

3. Indigenous Bears Nearby - NO BEAR POPULATION NEARBY. How hard can this category be? Just have more bears around. It's simple, asshole. F

4. Resume Prestige - All I could find is that it's the fastest growing college in Tennessee, which means that it can't be that great because if it were, more people would have gone there in the first place. F

5. Proximity To My House - 7 hours by car, which is just short enough that you psych yourself into it and then immediately regret it in hour 3.5. F

6. Name Brevity - It's short, but again, 'Austin Pee'. F

7. Elevation Above Sea Level - 509 feet, which is juuuuuust low enough for... F


Holy Cross

Where the fuck is this? 
In the fancy schmancy town of Worcester, Massachusetts. They play in the Patriot League. Great.

1. Nickname - Crusaders, which is super cool unless you are a Muslim. You know who hates Muslims? Pope Urban II and Donald Trump. F

2. Notable Alumni - Bill Simmons? That would have been a passing grade 10 years from now. Unfortunately, Bill Simmons has since created a black hole by retreating so far up his own asshole. F

3. Indigenous Bears Nearby - This is DEEEEEEP in black bear country. Normally I'd give you an A, but I can't get over the thing about your mascot waging holy war against Muslims. D

4. Resume Prestige - If you're applying for a job where part of your duties is to act stuck up and murder people with a different religion, you'd get an A. But there are only a limited number of seats on President Trump's cabinet, so... F

5. Proximity To My House - Too far. I might as well go somewhere warm and with more religious tolerance. F

6. Name Brevity - You know what's short? Holy Cross. You know what else is really short? 'Sieg Heil!' F

7. Elevation Above Sea Level - 480 feet, which isn't nearly high enough.  F



Where the fuck is this? 
Baton Rouge, Lousiana. They play in the SWAC, which also doubles as cool rap slang.

1. Nickname - Jaguars. Not a bad mascot, but the Jacksonville Jaguars aren't too far away and they rub their stink off onto everything and anything.  D

2. Notable Alumni - Randy Jackson. From American Idol. Again, super cool if it was 10 years ago, but not anymore, dawg. F 

3. Indigenous Bears Nearby - Yeah, there are some pretty close bears. The last thing you need when you're making up some gumbo is for a bear to come by and steal it all though. F 

4. Resume Prestige - Here's how I see it going:

"Where did you go to college?"
Oh, down south? Which school?"
"In Baton Rouge."
"Oh, so LSU?"
"No, Southern University."
"Right, but which southern university?"

No one needs that hassle. F 

5. Proximity To My House - No one drives from Chicago to Louisiana. I get all the cajun spice I need from the Popeyes nearby. F

6. Name Brevity - Short, but too nondescript to get away with being that short (see above).

7. Elevation Above Sea Level - 56 feet. And probably a quick judgement from bringing up sea level elevation to anyone in Louisiana. Good thing Spike Lee doesn't read this blog.


Florida Gulf Coast 

Where the fuck is this? 
Fort Myers, Florida. Atlantic Sun Conference. Remember when they dunked on all those fools so many times a few years back? Yeah, this team is no Dunk City. It's not even Dunk Township. 

1. Nickname - Eagles. Sorry, but Chip Kelly ruined this for you. F

2. Notable Alumni - Chris Sale, starting pitcher for the Chicago White Sox. He's a great pitcher, but they are a garbage team. F 

3. Indigenous Bears Nearby - Yeah, there are definitely some strong beareas around, but if I'm going all the way down to Florida, I want to see a goddamn croc. Deliverance > The Revenant. F

4. Resume Prestige - I honestly know nothing about this school. F 

5. Proximity To My House - TOO FAR. F

6. Name Brevity - This F is definitely deserved. Typing out Florida Gulf Coast University just caused me to have wrist problems. F

7. Elevation Above Sea Level - 10 feet. Let's flood it.


Fairleigh Dickinson 

Where the fuck is this? 

1. Nickname - Knights. Wow, that's original. Was 'Tigers' taken? Shit, you aren't even the only school in New Jersey that's the Knights and New Jersey is the size of Soldier Field.

2. Notable Alumni - Oh man, have you heard of 'No One'? Yeah, I think the answer is no one. Take a look. No. One. F 

3. Indigenous Bears Nearby - There are none. I would totally watch a show called Jersey Bears. It's like the Gummy Bears but they would be lit on amphetamines. But there are no bears in Jersey, sooo... F

4. Resume Prestige - The same prestige that my college (Eureka College) has: every job interview gets you at least one "Is that even a real school?". Eureka College almost went bankrupt before my senior year, so this one gets a failing grade too. F 

5. Proximity To My House - I'm in Chicago. None of these stupid schools are close. F

6. Name Brevity - It's only 2 words, but both of those words are long and one of them is impossible to say. "As in Chris Fairleigh?" F

7. Elevation Above Sea Level - 128 feet. This is the part of the country that gets ruined in every movie that includes a giant tidal wave. Not even John Cusack can save Chris Fairleigh College.



Where the fuck is this? 
In good old Hampton, Virginia (natch). Hampton is a 'proud' member of the MEAC. 

1. Nickname - Pirates. Great. First we have a school supporting religious genocide and now we have a school that supports Somali pirates? LOOK AT ME. I'M DE CAPTAHN NAOW.

2. Notable Alumni - As much as I would love to shit on everything, Booker T. Washington went to Hampton and that's awesome. Then again, so did something called DJ Envy, so I have to take off points for that. B 

3. Indigenous Bears Nearby - Yeah, you've got some pretty solid bear action nearby. Too bad bears hate the taste of Somali pirates. F

4. Resume Prestige - Any school that had Booker T. Washington go there looks excellent wherever you go. B 

5. Proximity To My House - Far. Thirteen hours. That's too far to drive unless...nope, that's always too far to drive. F

6. Name Brevity - It's short, but holy cow, they didn't even throw 'University' at the end. And it's the name of the town? No one likes follow up questions when you're just trying to make smalltalk. "I went to Hampton." Oh, really? The city or the college? TOO MUCH. F

7. Elevation Above Sea Level - 10 feet. Same as the CHUDS in Florida.