They are the most important nine men in collegiate sports and you probably can't name one of them.
They are the NCAA Men's Basketball Selection Committee. They check into an Indianapolis hotel (why is everything in Indianapolis except Peyton Manning?) on Tuesday and do not emerge until Sunday evening after announcing the 68 teams that they have invited to "the Big Dance."
Everyone else can go home.
And that's what our reader-generated list is about this week: Top 10 Tips Your Team Won't Make The Big Dance. Most of your teams are doomed. Many all ready know it but some do not. You can help by using your snarky sense of humor to dump on someone.
Send your entries to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your first name, initial of your last name and your location. The list appears here Thursday and your entry cannot be included without this information.
As for the committee, the chairman is University of Connecticut Athletic Director Jeff Hathaway. The folks at Duke and Kentucky must be busy. If you really want to know the rest of the committee, you can find it somewhere else. We don't care who they are, just who they pick.
They use to pick "just" 64 but now it's 68 so that eight teams can fight for the right to be part of the 16th seed. "Come on, guys, let's win this game so that Kentucky can beat us by 45 in the opening round!"
The field includes 31 conference champions, so the committee just has to seed them. It's the 37 "at-large" teams that must be picked in those sequestered rooms in Indy. Many questions must be answered such as:
• The 12 teams in the Big 10 could see eight or nine make the Dance. If so, how humiliating for the ones that don't?
• Will Harvard (26-4) get in and, if so, will Linsanity go back to school?
• Will the Pac-12 get a second team into the Dance? Jerry Palm of CollegeRPI.com was asked last month to evaluate the conference and replied: "Words like putrid come to mind."
Hey, Jerry, you should enter our reader-generated list contest. You sound like a natural. As for everyone else, remember that we are always looking for funny. Send your entries to email@example.com and do it now. The committee needs your help.