Of Brackets, Pools, Betting And Worker Productivity And College Basketball

Slacker day.



Two of the biggest days of the college basketball season are the first and second day of the NCAA tournament with sixteen games on each day and apparently the NCAA Men’s College Basketball Tournament is not a very friendly time for employers. It seems that many workers or fans have no idea what the names are of about 97 percent of players performing or where their schools are located. Much of interest is because of gambling, illegal gambling in the truest definition of wagering. Office pools, brackets, whatever it is called and generally at penny ante prices. But betting has become a lure and people like Warren Buffet have decided brackets are good for company morale and the games help lift spirits. For two days a year, they allow workers to slack off. Buffett, in the past, offered workers a million dollars if those workers were able to figure out what teams advanced to the second phase of action, the so-called Sweet 16 or the 16 colleges that got to that portion of the tournament. Apparently there is a lot of betting going around.

Wallethub, a website, estimates gamblers spent about $10 billion on 2018 bets with about $9.7 billion in illegal gambling. If you wonder why various states around America have sportsbooks, the states want a piece of the action. Nevada casinos made an estimated $100 million in profit on basketball in the spring of 2018, most of that money coming from the NCAA tournament and some of it from the NBA. About the worker productivity part. Wallethub claims that 81 percent of the human resources people that were contacted say their companies have no office pool policies, besides 89 percent of workers say the tournament builds office morale. Wallethub says the tournament may have cost companies about $7 billion as workers productivity fell. The NCAA doesn’t like sports gambling but it helps businesses. It’s madness.


UMBC’s Arkel Lamar (33) blocks a shot by Kansas State’s Barry Brown (5) during the first half of a second-round game in the NCAA men’s college basketball tournament in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, March 18, 2018. (AP Photo/Bob Leverone)