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Through the Trash Bin: Wrapping Up the WCR's March Madness Pool

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Chasse Rehwinkel

I gamble, therefore I write...or I write, therefore I gamble...honestly, they're pretty similar professions…

Well it's over, the WCR's March Madness Pool finally has its champion.

And for all of you out there that studied stat after stat in preparation for this league I'd like to point out that our champion, Tory Casterline, had literally never watched more than a minute of basketball at any level before this tournament.

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What?!?

You heard that right, Tory "Frost Heaves" Casterline not only bested me--which won her the right to write a post on the blog about anything she wanted due to a prop bet we made--but everyone else.

Casterline was able to give a brief interview to me, discussing her win and trash talking the many ChicagoNowers she left crippled in her wake...

Excerpts from a phone conversation on Monday, April 6, between Tory Casterline and Chasse "The Windy City Rounder" Rehwinkel. Unfortunately for hardcore college basketball fans, no this is not a late April Fools' Day prank. 

Windy City Rounder: So how did it feel when Butler missed that final three and you knew you had won?

Tory Casterline: Pretty excited considering I know nothing about basketball and the championship game was the first basketball game I'd ever watched. It was pretty shocking for me to win something like that in my life.

WCR: For the benefit of all those players out there who didn't win, could you explain the strategy you used in this pool?

Casterline: Sure, I made four brackets. The first one, called "The Fighting Artichokes," I consider my real bracket, and that was based on what teams I liked, what locations I thought were nice and what mascots I thought were cool. My "Fighting Pickle" bracket was based entirely on what places I'd like to live. That one finished last. The "Blue Blob" bracket was sort of based on Quigley's "full proof strategy" he outlined in an article awhile back...

WCR: That one ended up doing well too, right? Top ten finish.

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For a reference point, here's what a blue blob looks like


Casterline: Yeah, that one was doing well for a while. The one that won however--"The Frost Heaves"--was based on which mascots would win in a heads-up fight. Of course, I had the Blue Devils winning.

WCR: Staying on the mascot subject, could you explain to the readers how you picked your brackets' names?

Casterline: Well you and I have a pretty long standing inside joke about obscure and funny mascot names, so I named my brackets after some good ones. The Fighting Artichokes is actually the nickname for Scottsdale Community College's sports teams. I think The Fighting Pickles is affiliated with the North Carolina School of the Arts or something like that. Doubt they have much of an athletic department anyway. The Blue Blob is actually the secondary mascot for Xavier and The Frost Heaves is the name for a minor league basketball team out of Vermont.

WCR: So what do you say to all the people that worked so hard on legitimate strategies, but in the end were bested by your mascot idea?

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You know, other than the obvious


Casterline: Just stop it. I was told when I first signed up for this that people who really try usually fail and weird strategies like mine often come out on top. So, I think serious players need to just give up and have cage matches with their mascots.

WCR: What does this win mean to you?

Casterline: It actually means a lot to me. I've had a really tough time recently. My sister passed away over the weekend, so a win like this makes me feel a little better. My family's even excited. My dad actually sent out an email to a bunch of people he knows, telling them about my win. It's exciting to have a win like this even if it's just a little thing.

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Tory Casterline pictured left, her late sister Jen, right


WCR: So you finished high in the Playoff Fantasy Football League, helped pick the horse I bet on this weekend in the Illinois Derby that ended up finishing second and you won the March Madness Pool, all without knowing really anything about these sports. Basically I'm asking, will you buy me a lottery ticket?

Casterline: I will buy myself a lottery ticket and share with you my winnings, contingent of course on you giving my $2 you took down this weekend at the horse track.

WCR: Going into this pool, was there anyone you really wanted to beat?

Casterline: Well, you of course...which three of my brackets did by the way...

WCR: Yeah, yeah...

Casterline: Also Quigley because I didn't want him to win two-in-a-row. And of course all the basketball and fantasy sports "experts" that were in the field.

WCR: Can you give a quick preview to the article you are going to write now that you have officially beaten me?

Casterline: Not totally sure yet what I'm going to do. Might be something Twilight related, dusting off the old "Team Edward" name, you know?

WCR: Be kind.

Casterline: Maybe...

WCR: All right, thanks again Tory, congratulations on your win.

We can't all be winner--some of us feel that we can't ever be winners. You can find the final bracket standings here. Note: When you look at my finish think golf...low scores are good...



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2 Comments

John Templon said:

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Happy to say that I did it the right way (1 bracket only) and ended up in 3rd. Though I should've picked Duke for the win in retrospect. They'd led Pomeroy for the past 4 months. But they were DUKE! (Knowledge only gets you so far.)

Chasse Rehwinkel said:

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I'd like to thank everyone that participated...and condemn everyone who beat me...

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