Sanity has prevailed.
CBS has found a humane way to dispense five minutes of information and 15 minutes of analysis of pairings for your men’s college basketball office pool.
Its “NCAA March Madness Selection Show,” set for 5 p.m. Sunday on CBS-2 after the Big Ten Tournament title game, is slotted for only one hour.
It’s still too long. But amen.
Surviving viewers of last year’s newly expanded two-hour bracket show on Turner — which reveals the seedings, snubs and matchups in alternating years with CBS — may recall host Ernie Johnson pausing in the middle of the ordeal to eat some pizza.
Paid product placement or not, the fact that the program’s ringmaster had time for — let alone, may have needed — mid-circus sustenance made clear Turner figured viewers would sit through anything.
Turner was wrong, and it’s a good thing or we’d be looking at a three-hour show by 2020.
Its contempt for viewers last March was rewarded with an all-time low TV rating for the annual 68-team announcement show, lower even than 2016, when the tournament field and pairings leaked on Twitter ahead of time.
The 1.6 overnight rating last year was nearly half that of CBS’ 2017 number a year earlier. March Madness clearly segued to March anger.