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Rabbit Runs Ahead


Son Battles Parents For First


The Chase Is On


theRabbit (J. Thompson) picked up two key wins in UCLA and USC Sunday night to head into the Elite 8 with a 10-point lead over second place. But keeping the lead will require a sacrifice unprecedented in the history of the Chippens Tournament Challenge.


In second place behind Rabbit just happens to be Make it Count, who just happens to be theRabbitŐs father.


Both players can still win the Chippens championship, but it could all come down to the Michigan vs. UCLA game.


And this is where things get interesting. If you recall, Michigan State lost to UCLA in the First Four play-in game. Both Rabbit and Make it Count are big Michigan State fans, both made their picks before Michigan State lost to UCLA, and both picked Michigan State/UCLA into the Elite 8.


But only one of them picked ŇMichigan StateÓ into the Final Four—Make it Count. Rabbit is currently beating his dad by 10 points. A UCLA win over Michigan would be worth 12 points. Rabbit and Make it Count have the same picks the rest of the way, so the game is the decider between the two. 


Now hereŐs where things get really interesting. Besides Make it Count, only one other person in the whole tournament picked ŇMichigan StateÓ into the Final Four—The Breeze, who just happens to be RabbitŐs mother.


The Breeze, who is also a huge Spartan fan, can also still win the championship, but only if UCLA beats Michigan. A UCLA win puts her as the top ranked player who picked Gonzaga to win it all. If UCLA loses, sheŐs out of the running for the title. 


All of this means Rabbit, a rabid Spartan himself, now has to root for Michigan—and against the fortunes of his parents—in order to maintain his lead.


Should Rabbit root for his favorite teamŐs in-state rival and step on his dadŐs back in order to win a Chippens title? Or should he put aside his own quest for glory so that he might witness tears of joy stream down his motherŐs face as she makes history?


The great storytellers of the past have found family drama to be rich in material but without any clear winners. King Lear said an ungrateful child is sharper than a serpentŐs tooth. Abraham was apparently willing to sacrifice his son Isaac to get what he wanted. Oedipus accidentally killed his father, but only after his father tried to kill him first. And then Oedipus poked his own eyes out for reasons that need not be mentioned.


IŐd say itŐs a wash. At this point, anyway, iacta alea est. When you click ŇsubmitÓ on your picks sheet and enter the arena, destiny takes over, and if your path to glory involves snatching it away from a dear loved one, well, no one can expect greatness without sacrifice.


We will find out RabbitŐs destiny in due course. In the meantime: Run, Rabbit, run.


Rabbit, after all, has more players than just his parents chasing him. According to Player Scenarios, 14 players can still win the Grand Prize, and some of them may catch Rabbit before the Michigan/UCLA game even tips off.


If Baylor and Houston both win, it will keep a lot of players in the game, notably Politicalgrrl, Wait É whatŐs happening?, and BrutalBrutis. All three are currently in the top 10.


Brutus is the 2010 champ, and could be the first player to ever win two titles. Politicalgrrl is in her 8th year and is currently the top player with Gonzaga winning. WhatŐs happening is looking strong with three Final Four teams still alive and a Houston-Gonzaga final. And donŐt forget about the players who picked Michigan and Baylor.


Fortunes rest on each game. Good luck!