the wreckage that is FAUCNFFC.

It’s true that I’m in sunny Florida, soaking up sunshine and beer that I’ve never seen before. But such is my dedication to yinz guys that I haven’t forgotten the Fifth Annual Uncle Crappy NCAA Final Four Challenge.
 Of course, we’ve already documented the collective crashing and burning of the tournament’s first weekend. And with the exception of a few contestants who we can now safely label as basketball savants, not many of us have been helped by the games of the last few days. Which makes it easier for me, as your trusty FAUCNFFC administrator. Because what we got here, boys and girls, is actually pretty simple: 

If Duke wins: Mr. Burns is our undisputed FAUCNFFC champion, for an astounding third time. He was one of several people who picked Duke to win the whole damn thing — Chachi, AAA, Kim and Kewyson are the others — but he’s the only one in the aforementioned group who also had a West Virginia-Duke semifinal game. 

If West Virginia wins: We have a two-way tie between Matlock, our favorite WVU alum, and Gina’s dog, who probably won’t benefit much from the Bocktown gift certificate unless Gina is willing to share her leftovers. Both have just one point so far; both also will get five more if WVU wins the title game. I’ll take the more formal step of notifying these guys via email, but, Gina and Matlock, if you see this in the meantime — I need a prediction for the final score of the championship game from each of you. The person with the closest score will be our grand champion. 

If someone else wins: Jesus, I have no idea. Also, I’m on vacation, so I don’t feel like figuring it out right now. 

The rest of us? We pretty much suck. OK, that might not be true, but we weren’t helped much by what has been the craziest NCAA tournament I can remember. There are a few of us who can still gain a point or two — but still remain safely out of title contention — depending on what happens Saturday and Monday. And while there are an awful lot of Blutarskys in the group this year, I don’t think it’s something you should take to heart. Out of 5.4 million ESPN bracket entries this year, only four managed to correctly pick 15 of the tournament’s Sweet Sixteen teams. 

So you’re not alone. Or you’re in good company. Or, uh, something like that. 

Here’s yer points so far, with possible remaining points in brackets (duh), in order of appearance: 

Uncle Crappy: 1 [2] 

Mrs. Crappy: 1 [0] 

Chachi: 1 [5] 

AJ: 1 [2] 

Kayla: 1 [2] 

Anthony: 2 [2] 

Doogle: 2 [2] 

Large: 0 

Bobbo: 1 [2] 

Larry: 2 [2] 

Carla: 2 [2] 

Pantster: 1 [0] 

CurlGirl Michelle: 0 

AAA: 1 [5] 

Papuga: 1 [2] 

Jim: 1 [0] 

Shadow: 0 

Ethel: 0 

Gina: 1 [5] 

Grandpa 1 [0] 

Kim: 1 [5] 

Doctor Yohe: 0 

HP: 0 

DD: 0 

Michael: 1 [0] 

Susan: 0 

Matlock: 1 [5] 

Burgh Baby: 1 [0] 

TheJim: 1 [0] 

My Seester: 1 [0] 

Fred: 1 [0] 

My Mom: 1 [2] 

Carolina Boy: 0 

Calipanthergrl: 0 

Mr. Burns: 2 [5] 

Kewyson: 1 [5] 

Juan: 0 



I still don’t have any idea who’s going to be the Fifth Annual Uncle Crappy NCAA Final Four Challenge winner. But I’m pretty sure it’s not going to be me.


So. How’s your bracket looking?

The good thing about the Fifth Annual Uncle Crappy NCAA Final Four Challenge is that the early-round upsets that bury our full brackets don’t always hurt here, because we’re generally going to have at least most of our Final Four picks still in place.

Unless you picked Kansas. Or Villanova. In that case, you’re kind of screwed.

But while there were a fair amount of us who picked the Jayhawks to win it all, we still have a full weekend of basketball before we start amassing points, so you Kansas fans should be ready to break out the preemptive schadenfreude and hope your opponents lose some of their picks as well.

Here’s a quick look at how we’re doing. Remember, we don’t start to tally points here until the tournament is down to its final four teams, but you’ll get a pretty good sense of how you stand at this point:

  • All four in: Uncle Crappy, Mrs. Crappy, Chachi, AJ, Larry, AAA, Ethel, Grandpa and Mr. Burns.
  • Three, including champion, remaining: Doogle, Kim, Doctor Yohe, HP and Burgh Baby.
  • Three remaining, but champ is out: Kayla, Large, Carla, Papuga, My Seester, My Mom and Calipanthergrl.
  • Two left: Gina, Michael and Matlock.
  • Two left, but champ is gone: Anthony, Bobbo and Shadow.
  • Two left, but your champ and your other title game participant is gone: Pantster, CurlGirl Michelle, Jim, Susan, The Jim, CB and Fred.
  • Your champion is the only one left: Juan.
  • One left, but not the champ: Kewyson.
  • And as much as I appreciate DD’s participation, the coin-flip method did not treat him well. He gets the season’s first Bluto — as in: “MISTER Blutarsky. Zero. Point. Zero.”

Not as bad as you might have thought, right? We’ll see how it goes this weekend, yinz guys.

FAUCNFFC is underway.


Holy crap. We have a shit-ton of entries for the Fifth-Annual Uncle Crappy NCAA Final Four Challenge. And in the interest of not making this the longest blog post in the history of the internet, we’re going to get right to the picks.
We start with yours truly:
I haven’t seen a dominant team in college basketball this season, so I’m going to ride the country’s best player — yes, I’m talking about Evan Turner — to a national title:
Ohio State vs. Kansas State / West Virginia vs. Baylor
Ohio State vs. West Virginia
Ohio State
Mrs. Crappy is without her Tar Heels, so she’s going with her fallback team:
OSU v. Syracuse / Kentucky v. Dook
OSU v. Kentucky
And then we got yinz guys, in no particular order. Long-time reader, first-time AUCNFFC player Chachi:
Chachi Says:
Final Four: Ohio St Vs Syracuse and Duke vs Kentucky
final: Ohio St Vs. Duke
Champ: Duke
We like AJ. He’s a Buckeye and a Tar Heel, and he picks appropriately:
Final Four: Ohio St v Syracuse/West Va v Baylor
Final: Ohio St v West Va
Champ: Ohio St
I haven’t yet met Kayla, but I’m happy she decided to play:
Final Four:
Kansas v. Syracuse, Kentucky v. Duke
Kansas V. Duke
Champ: Kansas
You know Anthony, who’s playing AUCNFFC for the first time:
Kansas Pitt Duke WVU
Kansas Duke
Past AUCNFFC Champion Doogle, who can’t stop being a shill for his employer:
Are you saying Bobby Mo can’t win it all? That’s like saying Jesus Christ can’t hit a curveball.
Final Four: Kansas vs. Syracuse/Kentucky vs Duke
Championship: Kansas vs. Kentucky
Champion: Kentucky
I want Kentucky to win so I can see Ashley Judd bouncing around. boing boing boing.
Large, one of two of us who actually played college basketball. He also likes torturing me:
Kansas vs. Syracuse/Kintuck vs. Baylor
Kansas vs. Kintuck
P.S. (Unrelated but interesting info that UC would enjoy) I found a long lost box of homebrew in the basement last night, and enjoyed a 10 year old Porter. Yum-yum.
Bobbo, who seems to claim more college teams that even me, generously offers a subscription to his newspaper as a prize. I’m thinking about awarding it to whomever finishes last:
Final Four: Kansas/Syracuse and WVU/Villanova
Final: Kansas/WVU
Champ: Kansas
Also, I’ll throw in a year subscription to the (Sewickley) Valley’s only newspaper, the Sewickley Herald, as a prize! :)
We welcome Larry, an actual current colleague who was the first to ever post a comment to Uncle Crappy. Larry’s a Penn State guy, and he’s concerned that Woody Hayes is turning over in his grave because of his pick:
OSU vs. Kansas State; WVU vs. Duke
OSU vs. Duke
Our friend Carla, who is no doubt drawing on her expertise as a national writer/editor for Yahoo Sports:
OK. I’m still not happy with this, but I’m tired of analyzing this darn thing. Here we go:
Kansas vs. Syracuse / West Virginia vs. Duke
Kansas vs. WVU
I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting Pantster. Here’s his picks, which he hopes will earn him the Bocktown prize:
FINAL FOUR: Kansas vs Kansas State & Villanova vs WVU
FINALS: Kansas vs Villanova
CHAMP: Kansas 
I can taste the fries now.
Last year, Mystery Michelle broke out of lurk mode for the first time with her AUCNFFC entry. Now’s she’s CurlGirl Michelle, and she’s back:
No real method here….
Final Four: Kansas vs. Kansas St. / Kentucky vs. Villanova
Championship: Kansas vs. Villanova
Champion: Villanova
For all of her grousing, AAA came up with solid picks (except for that thing about Duke):
Final Four: Ohio State/Syracuse & Kentucky/Duke
Ohio State/Duke
Champ: Duke
Papuga’s back! Hi, Dawn!
Okay, I’m back again this year. Last year I got pounded, but my gut has a feeling…
Kansas/Syracuse and WVU/Baylor
Jim, otherwise known as our favorite television traffic guy in the history of broadcasting, is back for the second year in a row:
Bring it:
Kansas/Kansas State and WVU/Louisville
You may know him as Shadow. You may also know him as Derrick:
Kansas v Syracuse / Kentucky v Villanova
Kansas v Kentucky
Ethel is one of the few to participate in every single edition of AUCNFFC:
OK, haven’t looked at anyone else’s, including Obama’s. Here is mine:
OSU vs. Syracuse and Kentucky vs. Baylor
Final: Syracuse vs. Kentucky
Kentucky wins
Gina’s selection for last year was one of my favorites of all time. This year’s is even better:
My dog’s picked sucked last year, so I asked my cat and he licked his ass. And then I asked my other cat and she said ladybugladybugladybug. So back to the dog (this takes forever, by the way, so I did the 1st round picking and just had him narrow it down).
Syracuse vs Kansas; WVU vs Villanova
Kansas vs WVU
Grandpa, otherwise known as our Michigan beer smuggler, does one for his brother-in-law:
Go Hope!
OSU vs. Kansas State / Duke vs. Kentucky
OSU vs. Kentucky
Kentucky (that’s for you Fred).
I don’t think Kim would have entered if not for the prospect of gallons of Bocktown barbeque sauce:
Final Four: Kansas vs Kansas St/Kentucky vs Duke
Championship: Kansas vs Duke
Champion: Duke (of course)
The good Doctor Yohe also knows basketball:
Final Four: OSU vs Syracuse/Kentucky vs Louisville
Championship: Syracuse vs. Kentucky
Champion: Kentucky
Final Four:
OSU vs Kansas St
Kentucky vs Texas A&M
then OSU vs Kentucky
Winner? Kentucky
I flipped a coin, literally.
Final Four: Ohio vs Florida / N. Mexico vs Notre Dame
Florida vs Notre Dame with Notre Dame winning.
Michael has moved back to Indy, but he hasn’t forgotten AUCNFFC:
Final Four:Kansas v Pitt/Kentucky v Duke
Championship: Kansas v Kentucky
Champion: Kansas
Susan’s been one of my favorite new readers of the last year, even though she has an obvious bias towards the eastern side of the state:
Final Four: Kansas vs. Syracuse/Kentucky vs. Villanova
Championship game: Kansas vs. Villanova
Champion: Villanova
Given West Virginia’s performance this year — probably good enough for a 1 seed — I was really hopeful we’d get picks from Matlock:
Kansas v. Pitt/WVU v. Baylor
Kansas v. WVU
Burgh Baby, the other one of us to actually play college basketball:
Kansas vs. Kansas State
West Virginia vs. Duke
Kansas St. vs. Kentucky
Kentucky takes it all
TheJim (or, TehJim) knows more about sports than you:
Kansas v Syracuse / WVU v ‘Nova
Kansas v ‘Nova
Sorry RMU. =/
My seester:
sorry I’m so late…Kansas vs Syracuse & Kentucky vs Duke. Then Kansas & Kentucky in the final game…Kansas wins it.
Fred, Ethel’s lovely and talented husband, asks a question while posting his picks. I know the answer; does anyone else?
ku vs k st.
wvu vs nova
ku vs nova
question: besides me, who is known for wanting “seashells and balloons”?
My mom entered for the first time every. Y’all watch your language.
I’m entering your contest this year: Final four: Kansas vs Kansas State and Kentucky vs Duke, Final two: Kansas and Duke, National Champion: Kansas. 
Mark claims CB stands for “Carolina Boy.” We know it actually stands for “Chalk Boy.”
Carolina Boy’s pix (predictable)
(1) Kansas vs. (1) Syracuse
(1) UK vs. (2) Villanova
(1) Kansas vs. (2) Villanova
Kansas Jayhawks – 2010 NCAA Mens Basketball Champion
College basketball freak (I mean that in the nicest way possible) Calipanthergrl is back for a second year:
Final Four: Kansas, Kentucky, Kansas State, Baylor
Championship Game: Kansas vs. Kentucky
Champion: Kansas (84-79)
Two-time winner and noted contrarian Mr. Burns started his entry like this:
As per usual, I’ll let you select my final four.
I responded:
“As per usual”? What exactly does that mean?
Let’s recap:
FAUCNFFC: You were boycotting brackets, so I picked for you. You finished in tie for first.
SAUCNFFC: You made your own picks. You won.
THAUCCFFC: You made your own picks, although you included one team that wasn’t in the tournament. You, uh, didn’t win.
FAUCNFFC: You made your own picks. You didn’t win, but you didn’t embarrass yourself.
If I’m picking for you, you’re getting all four 15 seeds. Just sayin.
He responded:
Ohio State, Kansas State // West Virgina, Dook
Kansas State // Dook
I look forward to Kewyson’s AUCNFFC entry explanation almost as much as I do my birthday:
Seeing that professional journalists often refer to this blog for reliable news feeds, I will up front cite my source of picks – 100% taken from a most notable sports authority- the WSJ (it also happens to be the only daily paper I have delivered) – just because they couldn’t predict the housing bubble and they freely allow Rove a platform doesn’t mean they can’t get the tourney right, right?
Hailing from Utah, Cosmo the Cougar will battle Big Jay from Lawrence, Kansas, with the Jayhawks winning by a feather.
Bucky Badger from America’s Dairyland will scrum with the Devil wears Prada team from the Tarheel state – with Bucky’s prolific ingestion of cheese finally constipating the advancement of the fury little critter.
Repeating an epic meeting between 2 historic power houses in NCAA basketball – Duke Blue Devils, whose name comes from the French “les Diables Bleus” which was the nickname given during World War I to the Chasseurs Alpins, the French Alpine light infantry battalion – will lose a close game to boys from the sunflower state when the jayhawks, a mythical cross between a blue jay and a sparrowhawk, ultimately triumph-
Rock Chalk baby
And that leaves us with Juan, oh he of little basketball knowledge. Phil’s Mom returned to Kornheiser’s show this year, and, surprisingly, she made some decent picks:
Oklahoma State v. Brigham Young / Marquette v. Baylor
Brigham Young v. Baylor
That’s what we got, kids. If I missed your entry — entirely possible since there are 1.476 of you this year — let me know and I’ll add you to the list. One thing to keep in mind: lots of you stuck with high seeds, so it may be necessary to submit a tie-breaker — we’ll do the standard score of the final game thing — at some point. If I need one from you, I’ll let you know.
Thank you all very much for playing. And good luck to everyone. Especially me.

clock is ticking.

Cover jinx? What cover jinx?

The Fifth-Annual Uncle Crappy NCAA Final Four Challenge gets started in about 24 hours, when the first games of this year’s tournament begin. So you’ve got 24 hours get your FAUCNFFC entries in via comment, email or carrier pigeon.

I have entries from:

  1. Chachi
  2. AJ
  3. Kayla
  4. Anthony
  5. Doogle
  6. Large
  7. Bobby
  8. Larry
  9. Carla
  10. Pantster
  11. CurlGirl Michelle
  12. AAA
  13. Papuga
  14. Mr. Burns
  15. My Mom

That’s a good list, and as always, I’m trilled to see a couple newcomers on board. But we’re still missing most of our regulars; you guys should know by now that I’m not above persistent email harassment until I wear you down.

You’ll find the rules here. Don’t miss out on the chance for bragging rights and Fabulous Prizes* — get your entries in today.

*Yes, the prizes are actually fabulous this year.

fast start for faucnffc.

Our favorite Mad Elf.

As is generally the case, I received a flurry of responses as soon as I posted the announcement that the Fifth Annual Uncle Crappy NCAA Final Four Challenge was open for entries.

And as is generally the case, the flurry has slowed. And then I start bugging people about signing up.

Here’s one reason why you should. I’ve joked for years about the fabulousness of the prizes I offer for AUCNFFC each year, because it gives me a chance to use a joke, borrowed by EPSN Radio’s Bob Valvano, that I never get tired of:

“*Prizes not actually fabulous.”

This time, though, we have an actual reason to be excited about the prizes, especially for those of you who live in Pittsburgh — or those who don’t but need a reason to visit the Crappys sometime in the near future — our friend Chris has generously offered a $30 gift card to Bocktown Beer and Grill for our FAUCNFFC champion. As the regulars know, thirty bucks at Bocktown will get you two dinners with beer — or, if you’re so inclined, a shit-ton of barbeque bacon fries. Mmmmm…

So. Get yer entries in, kids. Rules are here. Deadline is noonish Thursday.