How far can Dayton fly?

24 Mar

March Madness 2014 is in full swing and social media is exploding surrounding the victories of Cinderellas and other low-seeded teams. Making probably the biggest splash at the moment, the Dayton Flyers are headed to the Sweet Sixteen for the first time in 30 years after their awesome, 2-point victory over the Syracuse Orange, just two days after beating their Big Brother rival, Ohio State, with a buzzer-beater. The Mercer Bears defeated Duke with an arguably more impressive win, but were since brought back to reality after being romped by Tennessee by 20 points.

But back to the Flyers. Just after their win over ‘Cuse, Twitter was up in arms, even the president gave props to the confident underdogs. Screen Shot 2014-03-24 at 11.25.46 AM

Being from Ohio, Cleveland specifically, we are often an afterthought. And rooting for Cleveland sports hasn’t always been easy, to say the least. Rooting for Dayton sports is nonexistent, aside from the crazed student body, alumni, and a handful others. 5 people were arrested on Dayton’s campus during a massive outdoor celebration following the victory. Even the university president crowd surfed in the arena following the upset. The excitement can be felt throughout the internet, from ecstatic Dayton fans to random observers.

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Now Dayton will face 10th seeded Stanford in the Sweet Sixteen, guaranteeing a double-digit seed in the Elite Eight. Can they keep up the intensity and make it even further, or buckle under the pressure?

How To Win A Billion Dollars

24 Mar

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March Madness is a phenomenon that captivates the US national sports realm from the second week of August until the first week of April. The much anticipated NCAA basketball tournament always lives up to it’s title by brining some sure fire madness. This madness is a result of the largely unpredictable outcome of the games, but that does not prevent people all over the world from still trying to beat the odds. Quicken Loans and billionaire, Warren Buffet sponsor a bracket challenge for the March Madness NCAA Basketball Tournament. The rules are simple: fill out a perfect bracket and win a billion dollars. This sponsorship tactic not only capitalizes on one of the most electric sports events in America, but it also exploits the most addictive fan tradition of gambling. Brackets are filled out, and people fantasize about what they would do with all that money, momentarily forgetting that the chances of winning Buffet’s billion-dollar bracket challenge, by some estimates, are 1 in 9.2 quintillion. After only the second day of upsets every single bracket was #busted, making a billion dollars just a short-lived fantasy to all who participated. Maybe next year?

North Carolina Tar Heels win on Social Media #SocialMadness

24 Mar

On Sunday North Carolina fell short to third-seeded Iowa State at the NCAA tournament entered the men’s NCAA tournament. With the game tied in the final 10 seconds, Iowa State’s DeAndre Kane drove the ball to seal the win. (85-83 Cyclones). North Carolina entered the tournament seeded number 6 however, the Tar Heels leads the entire college basketball league with their social media following. The Tar Heels have over 1 million supporters on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram combined. Below you can take a look at the amount of followers North Carolina has by individual platform. Duke, a long standing basketball powerhouse trails the Tar Heels on Facebook and Twitter.

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Now, that we know the Tar Heels lead social media. Let’s take a look at what content they are posting. In this tweet below the Tar Heels created a gallery from the last game of the season (losing to Iowa State).

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This provides a treat for the 1 million+ followers, because it sends the message “Hey we lost but lets celebrate our run!” That is the engagement the Tar Heels have mastered, no matter win or lose they will provide some exciting content for their fans and that’s what keeps they following! Go Tar Heels ! ! !

Suns Look To Stun League, Earn Playoff Berth

24 Mar

 There has been one common theme for the Phoenix Suns since the 2009-10 season: losing. Ever since a crushing loss to the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals of the 2010 NBA playoffs, the Suns have been unable to break .500 for an entire season… that is, until now. Despite finishing last season with the second worst record in franchise history, a roster that looked mediocre at best, and extremely low expectations from the league and media, Phoenix has managed to prove all the critics wrong as they fight for their first playoff berth since the Steve Nash days. This unexpected run can be credited to new GM Ryan McDonough, who worked under Danny Ainge, the man credited for putting together the pieces of the Celtics championship run in ’08, and new head coach Jeff Hornacek, who is a former player of the suns and is now responsible for the new wave of excitement surrounding the team. Currently sitting half a game out behind both the Dallas Mavericks and Memphis Grizzlies who are tied for the 7th and 8th seeds in the West, Phoenix is riding a 3 game win streak and looking to keep that going. With star guard Eric Bledsoe having recently returned from a 33 game absence due to a knee injury, the suns hope to recapture the playoff spot that belonged to them earlier this season and prove they had it in them all along. Now, with only 13 games left in the season, a playoff spot is anything but guaranteed, but what is guaranteed is the excitement that will surround the team for the remainder of the season.

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NCAA March Madness biggest upset thus far

24 Mar

March Madness is notorious for having some of the biggest upsets in their competition amongst the best of college teams. No one was able to predict the upsets that occurred and predicting a perfect bracket proved to be impossible after the first round of 64 match ups. I myself got let down from having a perfect bracket after Ohio St. (6) lost to Dayton (11) 60 to 59 in a huge upset. With that being said, I believe that Wichita St. (1) vs Kentucky (8) was the biggest upset in this year’s March Madness.
Wichita St was the only team to come into the competition undefeated and even made it past the first round with ease after defeating Cal Poly. Once the game against Kentucky came along it was a tough battle to stay in the lead against a strong Kentucky team that did not give up their fight to win. Down to the final 3 seconds of the game when Wichita St was behind by 2 points, Wichita St. had the opportunity to either tie the game or win it all, what happened instead was a missed three pointer by VanVleet that resulted with Wichita St. losing to Kentucky in the biggest upset of the competition so far.

Social Media Unifying MLS Expansion Efforts

24 Mar

When MLS commissioner Don Garber announced the league’s plans to expand to 24 teams by 2020, supporters groups and soccer cities across North America launched their campaigns to bring MLS to their home. Since its inception in 1996 the league has steadily grown from 8 to 19 franchises. Historically, MLS can attribute this growth to the incredibly passionate fans and “supporter’s group culture” in markets like Salt Lake City, Portland and Toronto, to name a few. MLS fans (average attendance of 18,600 fans per game in 2013) have surpassed NBA fans (17,300) and America’s top soccer league now outdraws its top basketball league. As cities across the country prepare their expansion bids, supporter’s groups are turning to social media as a unifying force to gain followers (literally and online) and strengthen their chance at being awarded one of the 24 franchises.

Orlando City SC was awarded MLS’ 21st franchise last November after a strong online effort and social media driven expansion campaign. OCSC launched an online petition that reached its goal of 15,000 signatures in less than two weeks thanks to Twitter and their #Mission15K hashtag. They also created a website for the expansion campaign “OrlandoBelievesInMLS.com.” Orlando City SC’s efforts yielded their city and fans MLS’ 21st franchise. Around the country, places like St. Louis, Atlanta and Minneapolis are selling MLS on the viability of pro soccer in their city. The San Antonio Scorpions are following Orlando’s lead and unifying their support for an MLS franchise online. They also started an online petition and are using the hashtag #MLSready along with a newly created Twitter handle, @MLSinSA.

Major League Soccer lists critical prerequisites for any aspiring MLS club. These pre-requisites include deep-pocketed owners, a soccer specific stadium and legitimate fan interest. The first two prerequisites are very easy to prove, either you have them or you don’t. Today, social media is making it much easier for clubs to prove they have the third prerequisite, legitimate fan interest.

Windows provides a look at Sweet 16

24 Mar

Windows Phone app NCAA March Madness app is the official app for the March basketball tournament and provides the most live and up to date info on the game. So while you are sitting in traffic on the way home from work, make sure to download the app to stay in the loop for the madness that is men’s college basketball.

Deep down we all love a Cinderella story, except when it screws up our perfect bracket that we spent hours combing over in order to win  a billion dollars from Warren Buffet. Sadly there are no longer any contenders in the Warren Buffet perfect bracket challenge, but for anyone who loves college basketball there is still plenty of opportunity for some great game time and under seed victories.

For all of those who’s brackets are still worth a glance, here is an early look at what is to come this week. Hopefully we will see some more great games like the upsets of Villanova, Wichita State, Syracuse, and Kansas. It really is a reminder that seeds don’t necessarily predict the way the games will go. It’s a chance for those lower seed teams to prove what they can bring to the table.

If you prefer to watch live during the games here is the line up for this coming week.

Here is a look at what is to come Thursday:

No. 11 Dayton vs. No. 10 Stanford.

No.1 Florida vs. No. 4 UCLA

No.6 Baylor vs. No.2 Wisconsin

No.1 Arizona vs. No. 4 San Diego State

The next four will take place this coming Friday:

No.3 Iowa State vs. No.7 Connecticut

No.1 Virginia vs. No. 4 Michigan State

No.11 Tennessee vs. No. 2 Michigan

No. 8 Kentucky vs. No. 4 Louisville

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