Just as a handful of premiere athletic conferences seems to always go deep into college basketball’s March Madness, this year’s TallyMadness — an online competition to determine Florida’s “best” lobbyist” — is dominated by some of the state’s most prestigious lobbying firms.
Capitol Insight. Floridian Partners. Fowler White. Holland & Knight. Johnson & Blanton. Southern Strategy Group. These are the ACC, Big 10 and SEC of lobbying firms and each of them still has one of their partners in the mix as the Elite Eight of TallyMadness.
Actually, Capitol Insight and Johnson & Blanton each have two members of their firms among the last eight lobbyists standing. #16 seed Alan Suskey continued his improbable run by knocking off perennial contender #5 seed Gus Corbella, while #15 seed Richard Reeves probably did himself no favors around the office, sending his boss, former Speaker of the House Dean Cannon, to the showers.
Suskey now faces fan favorite #10 seed Scott Ross for a shot at the Final Four, while Reeves will take on dark horse #8 seed Jim Magill.
#TeamJB’s two Elite Eight representatives came from behind in two razor-close match-ups. #4 seed Travis Blanton knocked-off #1 seed Nick Iarossi in a battle of two of Adams Street’s best-dressed men. Meanwhile, the last remaining #1 seed, Jon Johnson, rallied to defeat #4 seed Katie Webb.
Two #2 seeds are among the Elite Eight: Mark Delegal from Holland & Knight and Chris Dudley from SSG. Delegal defeated reigning co-champ Monica Rodriguez in the match-up that received far and away the most votes, while Dudley put an end to Ron Pierce’s Cinderella story.
I don’t know about you, but I am really looking forward to the Blanton vs. Delegal and Johnson vs. Dudley match-ups to determine who makes it to the Final Four.
Voting in the Elite Eight ends at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, with the Final Four set to get underway the Monday after Easter.