Ever since the pandemic started at the end of 2019 and became more serious at the beginning of 2020, sports have been significantly different. There have been either no fans or far less than half capacity of the fans that could be there.
In America, sports are a big deal for a lot of people. Many people don't miss a game of their favorite team. So many Americans are die-hard football fans or basketball fans. When COVID-19 hit, all sports were canceled, no teams were playing, and once games started again, fans weren't allowed, teams would have to withdraw because of COVID-19 contractions, and it was really hard for a lot of people to not watch sports. Not to mention that playing sports are some people's job.
All of these reasons are why it is so important to hold March Madness this year.
As the vaccine comes out and more people take it and the COVID-19 numbers are getting under control, people are looking for some normalcy, whether this is being able to go out to eat at a restaurant or being able to go outside of their homes and see their families. While March Madness may not be the same as going out and seeing your family, for some people it is what they look forward to each year.
For my family, we do a bracket challenge every year where we all fill out a bracket and keep a point system to see who wins. We usually sit down and watch a majority of the basketball games together and get super into them. For us, and many others around the nation, when March Madness was canceled in 2020 we were so disappointed. We knew that this was for the best, but for many people, March Madness is such a tradition for my family and something we looked forward to each year.
This year March Madness is officially back, and although COVID-19 still is present and affecting the games, it is so important that March Madness is still happening. This tournament is giving people hope and showing them that there are still some normal things happening even though there is still some lack of normalcy surrounding the tournament.
This tournament is not only giving people something to watch, but it is also bringing back some of the previous normalcy that we had before the pandemic started. It is also giving college basketball players a chance to showcase their skills and their talent before they have to make the choice of whether or not they should enter the NBA draft or play another year. Not only is this tournament important to fans, but it is even more important to those who are actually playing. This is their future that they are playing for, their legacy, and their career, in a sense.