We made it.

Just when it seems darkest in the sports world, March Madness brings joy back into our lives.

As a sports fan, there is no worse time than February and early March. You start making weird TV choices because you’re trying to fill a sports void that just can’t be filled by the NBA regular season.

So congrats to all. We’ve made it through a long February and the first two weeks of March. The first play-in games for the NCAA Tournament start today.

This time of year also serves as an annual reminder about how HORRIBLE I am when it comes to filling out a bracket.

Sportswriters are notoriously bad at it. I had a sportswriter friend that would meticulously pick his bracket, then have his wife fill one out based on team colors, mascots or whatever she wanted. He said his wife wins every year.

Two years ago, the bracket I filled out on facebook was so atrocious, my former sports editor felt compelled to post the following on my wall:

“I want you to know that you are the only person out of my friends that has a worse tournament bracket than me.”

Needless to say, no one will be asking for my bracket-picking advice anytime soon.

Admittedly, this is the only time of year I truly follow college basketball. I keep tabs on my Wildcats and how they are doing in the Pac 10, but I don’t watch full non-Arizona college basketball games until this week.

So here is my bracket, for better or for worse. Bryan and I both filled one out last night, and we’ll see who does better. I know my team name looks mean, but Bryan’s is: “Mandy Can’t Hang.” We have a very mature relationship.

Happy March Madness everyone. Spring is here, and so is the best part of college basketball.

The best part of college basketball also means something else. It signals that BASEBALL IS AROUND THE CORNER.