Thursday, March 22, 2007

I'll analyze anything involving a bracket

The underdogs all received eviction notices from the NCAA Tournament last weekend, but Cinderella is still alive and well in The Birmingham News' showdown to decide Alabama's favorite pop culture figure. (The Internet voting started last week, and the field is down to the Sweet 16. You can vote here for the finalists in the television, music, books, and stage and screen regionals.)

The online bracket thus far has played out a lot like an average March Madness. All four No. 1 seeds -- director John Badham, actress Courteney Cox, author Harper Lee, and country legend Hank Williams -- made it to the second weekend. A vulnerable
No. 2 seed -- country band Alabama -- is living on a prayer against a tough draw. (Jimmy Buffett at No. 7? Seriously?) A No. 6 seed "upset" a No. 3 seed in a win you could see coming all along. And we have two potential George Masons: actor Orlando Jones and author Kathryn Tucker Windham, both underrated No. 13 seeds.

The most vulnerable No. 1 seed is Badham, the Saturday Night Fever director, who has the least name recognition of any top seed. To make the Final Four, he must overcome the youth support for the "Make 7 Up Yours" guy and then defeat either the Emmy-nominated Louise Fletcher or the notorious Tallulah Bankhead, who easily could have been the region's No. 1 seed.

None of the No. 1 seeds are locks for the Elite Eight, though. Cox's opponent, actress Sela Ward, has been a favorite of Alabama fans since her days as a Crimson Tide cheerleader. Meanwhile, Lionel Richie is a legitimate threat to Williams, and Windham's homespun ghost stories have made her a beloved Alabama folk legend.

In the end, Lee and Williams should meet in a hotly contested championship round. But March is well-known as a month in which what you think should happen often doesn't.


Blogger Rurality said...

Glad you posted this. I had to run vote for Tallulah!

8:06 AM  
Blogger Sheila said...

Dang, I read your post too late. I'll have to vote in the next round.

10:19 AM  

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