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As you can see from the top of this page, Bridge Winners has agreed to host a Fantasy Bracket for the 2018 USBC, which starts on Friday, May 11th in Houston, and will select USA1 for the 2019 Bermuda Bowl.

MAJOR EDIT!!! The wonderful gremlins at BridgeWinners (initials GH) have figured out how to do a bracket that starts with the Round of 16, so there will only be two "Fake" teams in the bracket, Bye15 and Bye16. I'll take suggestions for player names on those teams, but will probably stick with my initial thought of just One, Two, Three and Four. I'm going to leave the next two paragraphs in, because otherwise this one wouldn't' exactly make sense, but they are no longer relevant - THANKS GREG!

Thanks to several of you, we figured out that we can use the software Bridge Winners has for the Vanderbilt & Spingold for this event, even though the Knockout phase of the USBC starts with the Round of 16, and the V/S start with the Round of 64, by using bye teams to fill the bracket. There will be 50 Bye teams and 14 real teams in the nonexistent Round of 64. The higher seed will win each match, leaving 18 Bye teams and 14 real teams in the Round of 32, where all but 2 of the Bye teams will lose. That will leave 12 real teams and Byes 15 and 16 in the Round of 16. The Bye teams are called Bye15 through Bye64, based on their bracket position. When 2 Bye teams meet, the one with the lower number will win.

As Michael Bodell brilliantly suggested in response to my earlier article about this, instead of having to pick the lower numbered Bye team to win the Bye vs Bye matches in Rounds 64 and 32, you can just start with the "all favorites" bracket, which will correctly pick the winners in those rounds, as well as picking FLEISHER over Bye16 and NICKELL over Bye15 in the Round of 16. You can then edit the results for the Round of 16 and later rounds to show which real team you expect to win each match.

As soon as I know which 11 teams have emerged from the Round Robin to continue in the Round of 16, and what each team's bracket position is, I will send Bridge Winners a list of the teams and the bracket will become live. That will be sometime after about 9:00 pm on Saturday (the Round Robin ends at 8:30, but the teams have to be shuffled after that). 

I hope that this will work and that you'll all have fun with it. Thank you to Bridge Winners for hosting this!

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