March Madness tradition grinds to a halt due to Coronavirus


photo courtesy of Creative Commons

The NCAA March Madness competition will not continue this year due to the novel Coronavirus, COVID-19.

Eitan Malkus, Guest Writer

Every March, tensions run high at school as students and teachers fill out their March Madness Brackets in anticipation of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament. But this year, all of that anticipation came to a sudden halt when the tournament was canceled on March 12 due to coronavirus concerns. 

Math teacher and faculty March Madness bracket leader Tori Ball said as many as 40 teachers were looking forward to participating in the faculty bracket this year. 

“It’s absolutely the right decision, but it’s incredibly disappointing,” Ball said. 

Ball feels that people usually participate in March Madness because it’s something to look forward to in a long period of school without vacations. Now that CESJDS has announced it will be closed until mid-April, the reality has been flipped. 

“It’s weird,” Ball said. “It’s going to be madness to have March without [March] Madness.” 

Teachers feel that March Madness is a staple at the school because it fits in with the community’s interests.

“We’re very oriented to the collegiate life,” Jewish history teacher and last year’s faculty bracket winner Sara Coxe said. “It fits into our cultural love of basketball and college.”

Freshman Benjamin Bass, the winner of last year’s freshman student bracket, feels that March Madness brings a sense of community to JDS. 

“It’s cool to see everyone caring about one sport at a time,” Bass said, noting that he’ll miss the competitive aspects of the tournament including playing against his friends

Ball will also miss the excitement surrounding the games. 

“It’s just really fun,” Ball said. “It’s so unpredictable, and I think I’ll just miss the excitement of that day and watching with friends.” 

While March Madness will be missed this year, there is always next year to look forward to. Also, a March without the Madness may lead to some creative options.

“I’m really curious to see how people spend their time,” Ball said. “I wonder if we can all bet on something else in the meantime.”