I play in the office pool, but more than just that, I emotionally get involved with the games. Yes, that's not an exaggeration. Emotionally involved. I stand up and yell at the TV set for teams located in places I've never visited, becoming hoarse for schools I didn't attend, cheering for Cinderellas I didn't know existed a month before.
Like most of America, I have fallen in love with the underdog narrative - the plucky, underdog story we've all seen in Hoosiers and Little Giants and countless good, bad, and terrible sports movies over the last fifty years.
And as a fan of my alma mater, Lehigh, I guess I live this underdog story on a near-daily basis. Lehigh is almost always the "smaller school" in all their NCAA athletics contests, whether it's wrestlers going against the semi-pros of Penn State and Iowa, or the football team going against the 100+ scholarshipped players of Yale or Princeton.
That has to be why, after standing up through two overtimes, yelling at my TV and imploring a bunch of college athletes I do not know to somehow take down one of the richest schools of the country, I felt sick.
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