Monday’s March Madness conclusion was a game certainly worthy of its championship title. Two storied and popular teams tipped off at 9:19pm EST, and after the final horn blew, Villanova found themselves ahead by three points due to some late-game heroics. It was the ideal contest to capture the spirit of the entire tournament.
We all watched the game, and many of us posted about it as we took in every play and whistle. Below you’ll see how the conversation unfolded as the players hit the hardwood.
The day of the national championship game and the ensuing reaction the day after account for around 150,000 mentions of the term “March Madness”. And as we can see below, there’s nothing like a buzzer-beating, game-winning shot to create a conversation spike – after Kris Jenkins made his three-pointer as time expired, mentions soared to nearly 6,900 in one minute.
When you compare the spikes in each teams’ mentions within the March Madness conversation, we can see that UNC’s peak occurred as Marcus Paige tied the game with his circus, three-pointer. This caused UNC mentions to top around 340 mentions in one minute, but Villanova’s mentions launched shortly afterwards with Jenkins’ answer.
The game’s last basket sent Villanova’s mentions to accumulate more than 1,100 in one minute.
To the winner goes the mentions as Villanova accumulated nearly 20,000 mentions. The University of North Carolina only received around 11,000 mentions.
Pennsylvania, Villanova’s home state, accounted for more mentions than the state of North Carolina as well. Pennsylvania accounted for over 2,800 mentions, while North Carolina accounted for over 2,400 mentions.
Lastly, men controlled the majority share of this online conversation as they made up 72% of all unique authors.
It would appear that the social conversation mimicked reality with Villanova getting more mentions, and really only pulling away after they won at the buzzer. Until that point, the social discussion was relatively even.