KT's Rules of Fandom

Friday, March 16, 2012
With the NCAA tournament going on right now, there's been a lot of discussion in the family about how we choose for whom we root.  During the tournament it's a bit easier, because usually we root for Carolina if they're playing and for the underdog if they're not.  However, this year we've had to use the full flowchart of our system, since Harvard got in for the first time since my grandmother was pregnant with my father.  Go Crimson! (Sadly we didn't make it past the first round). Go Tar Heels!

So, I hereby present to you the Vaughan family rooting algorithm:

If Harvard = yes, root FOR
Else, If UNC = yes, root FOR
Else, If dook OR yale = yes, root AGAINST*
Else, root FOR underdog

* In cases where dook and yale are playing each other (a rare occurrence), root for the building to  collapse.  Or for a tie. A tie that results in the inability to win any games for the rest of the season.

What do I do if Harvard plays UNC (which has happened twice in women's NCAA play in the last 20 years)? I root for Harvard AND UNC, hoping Harvard will win but not being upset if Carolina does.  The DH points out that this is partly because in the Harvard - UNC - not dook/yale - underdog formula, in a Harvard/UNC matchup Harvard is nearly guaranteed to be the underdog.  (Squash, fencing, crew notwithstanding).

Knitting peeps, never fear, there is much knitting going on.  I'll try to post some of it this weekend!


  • Dave

    Actually, as per the NCAA's official designation and the Crimson's headline, Harvard made it to the "second round" of the tournament.

  • KT

    Point taken, Dave! I keep forgetting that there's a buy-in round...

    My family points out that these rules are actually quite simplistic and don't take into account the vast complexity that rules who I root for.

    For instance:
    I rarely root for Kentucky.
    I often root for Kansas (because they were the mini-UNC when Roy Williams was there), except for last night when I was rooting for their opponent. And not because Purdue was the underdog - but because I thought UNC could more easily beat Purdue than Kansas (assuming we get to the Round of 8), and with Kendall Marshall's wrist we need us some easy opponents.

    I also was conflicted in the Lehigh/Xavier game because normally I would root for Lehigh. But having Lehigh lose was also gratifying, because it meant that the team that beat dook got beat in their next game. This is based on the theory that you want to lose to the eventual champion - not to someone who gets skunked in their next matchup.

    But I'll stick with my simpler rules above - if only because they're a lot easier to explain to my kids!

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