March Madness was canceled. Everybody is sitting at home, quarantined. There are no sports on and seemingly nothing to do. People are going stir crazy. But luckily for Bucs Twitter, a guy named Nick Sitro came up with a Bucs Media March Madness Style Bracket. He did a great job on it and separated platforms/sites on the left side of the bracket and individuals on the right side. He seeded everyone based on total follower count to eliminate any bias and your boy ended up being a #4 seed. Here’s how the original draw looked:
I thought it was a really tough road and unlike some March Madness Style Brackets I’ve seen, almost every single contender in this one gave a hoot. They were RTing their matchups and trying to juice their following into voting them through to the next round. Word was getting around even Bucs great Warren Sapp weighed in on with his prediction:
I was pitted against really awesome Bucs ambassadors and writers/content producers that could have easily won the whole thing like ESPN’s Jenna Laine, The Draft Network’s JC Cornell, and The Athletic’s Greg Auman. In the final, I faced off against PewterReport which is my personal favorite place for Bucs content and I read their site almost daily. I used to subscribe to them when they were a magazine in the early 2000s before they went fully online. I’ve also worked with them a few times throughout the years which was a huge highlight for me personally.
Now winning this tournament can seem like no big deal, but to me, it’s a HUGE deal. In 2015 I decided to hang up the (PS3) sticks, stop playing Madden, and fully dive into this All-22 world on Twitter. It’s been five years and I have not missed a week. Not a single one. My kid was born on a Monday Night and I was breaking down film from the hospital room the next night while everyone was sleeping. It is very time consuming too. Breaking down a full game takes 1.5-2hrs, then editing and cutting up clips or videos to release can take anywhere from another 2-4 hours depending on how many plays need to be shown to illustrate a point. But it’s been a passion project of mine and my ~2k followers when I joined Barstool in 2016 has ballooned to ~24k followers in the last 3.5 years. To go from such modest beginnings to defeating six others competing for the same prize in Buccaneers coverage is extremely humbling to say the least. It goes to show that all my hard work over the years, even when I was doing it “to an audience of nobody”, all paid off.
That brings me to a special shout out. I’m aware that my hard work and dedication to breaking down tape could have taken me so far, but I wouldn’t be at the top of the mountain or anywhere near my follower count without my #2 supporter (after my wife, who is #1), Big Cat. I didn’t communicate with him when all this was going on or ask for anything votes or social bump. But unprompted, he would RT all the polls which obviously boosted the participation, mainly in my favor. It made me an unstoppable force throughout the tournament and really propelled me to victory.
I was honestly conflicted about how to feel about it as the numbers were certainly juiced once he brought attention to it. And it wasn’t just Big Cat either. Deke Zucker, Brandon Walker, Joey Langone, Michael Grier, and a few others helped boost me into to this position of power in Bucs Twitter.
And a very special shout out to the Cheah Hive, who without have been riding from the beginning and created some unreal (a bit too unreal I learned) promotion to get me to the throne.
And finally, a shout out to all the Stoolies (including the Minifans) that voted for me that don’t give two craps about a football team in Florida. Your support and participation truly made this all possible.
So now that I’ve been voted the King of Bucs Twitter, what now? Aside from giving the big Js some guff next time I get to visit press row at Raymond James Stadium, continuing to dunk on the haters (when appropriate), and probably updating my twitter bio, I’m just going to keep grinding. It took five years of hard work to get to the top, if I plan to stay here, I can’t just rest on my laurels. I gotta keep watching the All-22, doing draft stuff, and keeping football alive 24/7/365. Now especially, when we all need it the most. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to the tape.
The People's Champ