It must be early March. How do we know that? Because we are talking about our favorite collegiate basketball "bubble teams" such as Drexel and Xavier.
"Being on the bubble" is the most anxiety-ridden condition in sports. It means you might get into the Big Dance and you might not. But even if your hopes are crushed Sunday by the NCAA selection committee, you at least are briefly known by fans who like to pretend that they have been watching you all season.
• "I'll say this about the Drexel Dragons, they play to win the game."
• "Yeah, but don't count out the Xavier Musketeers, 'cause they have heart and hustle."
But as attractive as the Dragons and Musketeers always are in early March, they are not the subject of this week's reader-generated Top 10 list. We asked you to focus on the "burst bubble" teams that have no shot of doing the NCAA tango next week. How can we spot these unfortunates who are doomed to staying home? Here's how:
Top 10 Tips Your Team Won't Make The Big Dance
10. "Brett Favre graduated in '91 and has no eligibility left," said Ben R. of Akron, Ohio. (Because Southern Miss is a legit bubble team, we are allowing this cheap use of the Favre name to make the list.)
9. "All your players stay four or five years and graduate on time," said Terry P. of Fort Madison, Iowa.