Justin Baltes – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- David vs Goliath is a very common theme within sports. A question that has never been asked is why do most people root for the “David”s?

Is it because people can relate to the underdog or is it that people just don’t like the bigger teams?

Sophomore Dominick Kerman when asked why people root for the underdog he said, “If they win it is shocking and refreshing to see the David’s win.”

According to a CNN article written by Harry Enten explaining why people root for the underdog he discovered in an academic study that two thirds of people prefer to root for the underdog instead of the favorite.

In March Madness this year no one game can fit the theme of a David vs Goliath more perfectly than Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) vs. Purdue.

The average height of FDU was 6’3”. The tallest player on the FDU squad was the 6’6 center Ansley Almonor. Compared to Purdue center and National player of the year candidate Zach Edey. Edey stands at a whopping 7’4”.  

To get into the tournament FDU had a very unusual path, having to play in the play in game to get into the actual tournament first round.

This led to Purdue being heavily favored.  They lost 63-58.

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Also, in NCAA basketball March Madness this year there have been more underdog wins than ever.

This year’s Final Four feature ninth seeded Florida Atlantic University (FAU), fifth seeded San Diego State, fourth seeded University of Connecticut (UCONN) and fifth seeded Miami.

Three of these four teams never made a championship.  It really looks like this is a year of the underdog.

FAU had a very unusual path by beating Memphis in the first round to then play the 16th seeded FDU in the second round.

Next, FAU played the fourth seeded Tennessee in the Sweet Sixteen. In the Elite Eight FAU beat fan favorite Kansas State.

Even though the FAU Owls could be considered an underdog their regular season record was 28-3.

LRHS junior Conall Fisher said, “Frankly this performance doesn’t surprise me, the record showed that they are a good team and shouldn’t be considered an underdog.”