NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament Second Round-Maryland vs Alabama

Four frenetically paced days of March Madness are in the books, and now it's time for the fun: to step back and assess grades for how some teams fared (and failed). 

I will be your teacher for this exercise, so let me first set some ground rules. 

  • Rule No. 1: There are no curves on which I will grade. I won't grade Kentucky on a different scale than, say, Fairleigh Dickinson. That'd be totally un-fairleigh to everyone involved.
  • Rule No. 2: These grades are based solely upon the first weekend of the 2023 NCAA Tournament. I don't care that Houston lost to Temple in January or that Creighton had a six-game losing streak near the end of last year. That is not a part of my criteria. This is not a power rankings. It's a report card.

All that's fair game is what teams did -- or in some cases, failed to do -- during their time in the NCAA Tournament field. That's a sample of one game for some, two games tops. My criteria is based entirely on vibes and performance with a heavy lean towards the vibes, so if you have problems with the report card, please wait until teacher conferences. Just know I will not be sharing my rubric and, no, I will not be rounding your team's 69 up to a 70. I am not that nice.

OK. Let's dive into the grades.

NCAA Tournament grades: Opening weekend report card