Megh Freeland Becomes First Back-to-Back Duke Econ Bracket Challenge Champ
On Monday night North Carolina beat Gonzaga to win a sixth national championship, effectively redeeming its three-point loss against Villanova last year. Stalwart Tar Heel fan Megh Freeland had two reasons to celebrate, as she became the first-ever two-time winner of the Duke Economics annual bracket challenge — impressive for someone who self-admittedly never expects to win. History repeated itself as she secured a 10-point lead over Professor Atila Abdulkadiroglu, who also predicted UNC would take the title.
“It’s fantastic! I’m so happy that UNC was redeemed. I heard a great quote last night from a UNC student: ‘It’s better than beating Duke!’” said Freeland, human resources manager at the Social Sciences Research Institute across campus.
North Carolina’s road to victory was arduous and hard-fought, but Freeland never lost faith. “I had a bit of frustration with the way they were playing this year, but I will always support, pull for, and love my Tar Heels!”
Bracket fees from the 2017 Marchinal Madness competition went to Paws4ever in Orange County. In total, the department raised $365 for the non-profit organization.
As the winner of the challenge, Freeland will get to keep the Marchinal Madness trophy for another year and select the 2018 charity. “I’m a big advocate for those without their own voice and firmly believe that we, as humans, are stewards — not masters — of the Earth and have a responsibility to protect all creatures and their environments,” Freeland said, deciding to choose the Carolina Tiger Rescue, a wildlife sanctuary that rescues animals and provides conservation education to the public.