March Madness brackets are all about the odds. From time to time, they’re also about the odd.
Hours before this year’s slate of teams hit the court for start of the NCAA Men’s College Basketball Tournament, entertainment news site Zimbio announced voting had commenced for its annual TV Couples March Madness Challenge – a competition that sees 64 television twosomes fighting it out, to determine which duo is the dreamiest. Yes, there’s a Ross and Rachel Conference.
Around the same time, U.S.-based blog The Reader’s Room kicked off its March Madness Reading Challenge, which invites bookworms to submit the titles of their favourite tomes, to be critiqued and seeded by a hand-picked panel of experts. (Go, Of Human Bondage, go!)
Not to be outdone, the Grand Haven Tribune in Grand Haven, Mich. has come up with a March Madness Beer Bracket, which sees a host of craft breweries from the west Michigan area battling it out for suds supremacy.
This year, the Winnipeg Free Press has decided to take part in the "madness," as well; except instead of triple-doubles, we’re turning our attention to double cheeseburgers.
In time for the NCAA tourney’s sweet 16 match-ups, which kicked off March 23, we’ve put together a bracket pitting 16 of Winnipeg’s most iconic burger joints against one another. That’s right: Munch Madness. See a map of the locations.
For the next four weeks, vote for your favourite diner, drive-in or dive. We’ll start with our sweet 16 picks, a number that will drop to eight, then four, until we arrive at our final two burger joints, which will tangle for the title.
Given that every Tom, Dick and Moxie’s has a special burger on the menu nowadays, we were forced to come up with a few ground rules.
Tenet No. 1: each locale had to be independently owned. Second; it had to be one-of-a-kind, which eliminated the likes of hometown faves such as Salisbury House, Nuburger and Junior’s.
Voting begins every Friday at noon, and remains open until the following Thursday at noon. You can vote on every match once per day. Thursday afternoon we'll tally the votes and set up the winners in pairings that will open for voting the next day at noon.
So behold the burger bracket below! Click on any of the mouthwatering morsels to vote, and to read more about each joint's MVP – that’s most valuable patty – a few career statistics, and a tip from Tim Turner, founder of Burger Club Winnipeg.
If you've got your own tips and tidbits to share, join the conversation in the comments below.
Update: Voting has closed! Watch our Saturday print edition for a feature on the winner.