Tuesday, March 14, 2017

2017 March Madness: Brackets and Fun Facts

It is finally time for March Madness, yeah! Admittedly, I am typically not a huge NCAA basketball fan, until March rolls around.  I love filling out brackets, witnessing upsets, and watching the nail-biting final rounds. My post-college roommate was a die-hard Indiana fan, so we spent hours watching Bobby Knight's drama and crew season after season.  My husband is a Michigan graduate and fan, so it is particularly exciting when the Wolverines make it into the tourney.  In the last few decades, they have made it to the National Championship four times: 2013 (lost to Louisville), 1993 (lost to NC), 1992 (lost to Duke), and 1989 (defeated Seton Hall).

For the second consecutive year, my friend Megan organized a local neighborhood bracket, "Rocky River Moms" with a fun twist.  Each person completes their bracket and donates a bottle of wine. At the end of the tourney, Megan hosts a GNO at her house to celebrate. The bracket winner takes home 50% of the wine, 2nd place 30%, 3rd place 20%, and the rest of us just enjoy an evening out together.

Last year I completed my brackets on a whim, ridiculously based on the alma mater of family and friends, so it was hardly scientific by any means.  This year, I read a few articles and made my picks. Again, not too-research heavy, but at least an improvement over last year, ha!

Addendum: I was in 1st place until the final championship! Had Gonzaga won, I would have scored a serious stash of wine...With NC's win, I landed in 7th place, but it was SO close and SO fun to follow along! Oh well, maybe next year!


Here are some fun facts and figures courtesy of Fox Sports...


19) TAKING THE COURT - It's been a long tradition that the tournament champions have cut down the nets to take home, but since 1986, the winning school has also been given the hardwood court, too. Many sell and/or auction off pieces to fans.

18) OLDEST TO YOUNGEST - The oldest coach to win a title was Jim Calhoun in 2011 at the age of 68. The title of the youngest coach belongs to Emmett McCracken who led Indiana to the championship in 1940 at the age of 31.

17) AGAINST THE ODDS - The odds of filling out a perfect bracket are one in 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 (that's quintillion).

16) LADY VOLS - The Tennessee Lady Vols have been to the Big Dance every year since the women's tournament was introduced in 1982.

15) POINTS MADE - Glen Rice (pictured) holds the record for most points in a single tournament with 184 during Michigan's 1989 run, and Duke's Christian Laettner holds the career record with 407 points in 23 games.

14) OVERTIME - The record for most overtimes in a single game is four, and it happened twice, once in 1956 and again in 1961.

13) HIGH SCORES - The record for most points scored by individual in a NCAA tournament game belongs to Austin Carr who recorded 61 points in Notre Dame's 1970 opener. Loyola Marymount scored the most amount of points by a team in one game with 149 points in 1990, while North Carolina holds the record for fewest points after recording 20 in a 1941 game.

12) UNCHARTERED TERRITORY - A No. 16 seed has never beaten a No. 1 seed.

11) GOLDEN ERA OF THE NIT - The NIT tournament use to take precedence over the NCAA tournament until the 1970s, when the NCAA barred teams from playing in other postseason tournaments if they declined an invitation to March Madness. In 2005, the NCAA purchased the NIT.

10) PLAYER TO COACH - Three individuals have won an NCAA championship as a player and as a coach: Joe B. Hall as a player and coach of Kentucky, Bob Knight as a player with Ohio State and coach of Indiana, and Dean Smith as a player at Kansas and coach at North Carolina.

9) FINAL FOUR CENTRAL - Kansas City, Missouri has hosted the most Final Fours to date with 10 since 1953. Indianapolis can overtake that mark in 2035. It is now an official NCAA rule that the Final Four take place in Indianapolis (NCAA HQ) every five years. The city has hosted six times already.

8) HUSKIE SWEEP - The Connecticut Huskies are the only school to win his-and-her national championships in the same year. The women's team won theirs one day after the men in 2004 and again in 2014.

7) EVERYTHING BIGGER IN TEXAS - AT&T Stadium, home of the 2014 Final Four, with a capacity of 80,000, is the largest stadium to ever host a Final Four.

6) ELITE STATUS - UCLA head coach John Wooden has the most national championships with 10. Among active men's coaches, Duke's Mike Krzyzewski leads the way with four titles. UConn women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma has won nine.

5) CINDERELLA STORY - The lowest seed to ever win the NCAA Tournament? Villanova as a No. 8 seed in 1985.

4) BEST OF THE BEST - Only once have all four No. 1 seeds advanced to the Final Four when Kansas, North Carolina, UCLA and Memphis met in 2008.

3) MORE SEATS - In 1997, the NCAA made it a requirement that the Final Four must be held in a dome stadium with a seating capacity of at least 40,000. In 2009, the capacity minimum was raised to 70,000.

2) SMALL DANCE - The first NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament was held in 1939... and consisted of only eight teams.

1) BRUIN BASH - Thirty-five different teams have won the NCAA tournament, but UCLA leads all schools with 11 titles.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Loving the XL Front Porch Planters

As we are rounding the corner into spring (hopefully!), I am daydreaming about a front porch re-vamp.  Perhaps from my Instagram feed of charming front stoops in London, Boston, and NY, or perhaps from those ridiculous books-known-as-catalogs from Restoration Hardware, I have always wanted simple, yet large-scale planters for our front porch.  Yet, I have never wanted to invest in their typically large-scale price tag.  But, I am determined to find something that will not break the bank.

A few years back, I put together a blog post about boxwoods with some more front porch inspiration...


Below are some inspiration photos of large statement planters and greenery to go along with them! Enjoy and happy soon-to-be spring!

Lee Ann Thornton...Mar 2013 HB Cover House

Circa Interiors & Antiques (Birmingham, AL)

Draper James (Reese Witherspoon's store) in Nashville
via narratives.co.uk

Crillon le Brave hotel in Provence via tripscout.blogspot

Timothy Corrigan Storefront

via Anthonywyer.com - "Buxus balls in custom Hampton's New Guinea rose wood pots"
The front door of the cottage is marked in red.
via House Beautiful, Classic Cottage in Napa Valley

via Pinterest

London color
via the2seasons.com

Shelter Interior Design

Liz Caan Storefront via driftwood-interiors.blogspot.com

via gildedmint.blogspot.com

via lovegrowswild.com

Daily Dream Decor via decoracion2.com

Love these basket planters from Artwood (of course Sweden)
Love these basket planters from Artwood (of course Sweden)
via parterre.com.au
(My Mom found this one 25 inches square, a solid option, and although a bit pricey, isn't AS bad as some out there!)

And speaking of spring...Only 12 more days to the official first day, but who is counting?!