If you are like most people in the michigandaily.com/Pizza House Challenge, your bracket was shot down long ago. The average Joe Idiot earned 56 points out of a possible 120 by picking Duke over Kansas and stumbling through the other picks.

Paul Wong
Maryland graduate Dave Sacks rejoices as the Terrapins beat the Jayhawks to advance to the championship game. (AP PHOTO)

Despite all the carnage on the left side of the board (South and West Regions), a few people have stood out from the rest – unfortunately most of those people did so because of their remarkable stupidity.

The leaders will get their day in the sun tomorrow, after the final scores are tallied, but today belongs to the losers.

In total, 253 people entered the contest. Five people got zero Elite Eight teams. It doesn’t take that much brain power to pick one of the top two seeds in either the East or the Midwest. How did these people get into Michigan?

Sixty-four sound-minded people picked Maryland (the third-most popular choice behind Duke and Kansas) to cut down the nets in Atlanta. Someone picked Illinois-Chicago, but nobody had Indiana becoming champions.

Our Illinois-Chicago friend came perilously close to being the worst picker of the year. He had the Flames knocking off Boston College for the title – neither team came close to winning once.

But despite what appeared to be the best efforts of Mr. Illinois Chicago, one man totaled just 32 points.

His loan Elite Eight team was, remarkably enough, Kent State. For some reason we think that he was actually trying to win. Duke, Gonzaga, Marquette and Mississippi State is a bad Final Four, but the lack of a No. 15 seed winning the title makes him more likely to be an unlucky fool than a deliberate loser like our friendly Flames fan.

These two may have picked the fewest winners, but there can be little doubt that stupider people are out there.

Many contestants left lines blank, and still others picked winners that weren’t involved in the game at all.

Admittedly, we goofed by putting Duke in Arizona’s spot in the West Region for the first bracket we published. But that is no excuse for picking a Duke vs. Duke national semifinal, as one crackhead did.

But the most amazingly braindead bracket of the year had a different Duke vs. Duke game. This time the real Duke (from the South) faced off against a magical Duke (which somehow won the other semifinal between Maryland and Kansas). The result of this Duke vs. Duke championship game? Of course, Kansas won. If anyone out there knows the owner of this bracket, please advise him to seek professional help.

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