Although the NCAA Division I Basketball Championship tournament officially began on Tuesday, the real action begins today, and for the third year in a row, President Obama has filled out brackets for both the men’s and women’s tournaments and made them publicly available on The White House Blog. The President’s past brackets have not been included in the Compilation of Presidential Documents, but his remarks honoring the eventual champions, such as the 2009 champs the University of North Carolina Tar Heels, are included. My research indicates that the first Presidential congratulations for an NCAA basketball team was in 1984, when President Reagan hosted the Georgetown Hoyas.
The Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents began publication in 1965 and is issued by the Office of the Federal Register every Monday. It includes proclamations, executive orders, signing statements, veto messages, communications made by the president to Congress, and other materials released by the White House during the previous week. The Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States is a similar publication that begins with the papers of President Hoover, and since 1977, has included everything contained in the Weekly Compilation. The Bluebook states that the preferred citation is to the Public Papers for a document that appears in both publications, although there is generally a lag time of a few years before documents first published in the Weekly Compilation will appear in the Public Papers. The Public Papers from the Clinton Administration include several transcipts of interviews with President Clinton conducted by ESPN, including a SportsCenter appearance where he discusses the 1995 NCAA championship game with with analysts Digger Phelps and Dick Vitale and suggests that Arkansas start the game playing zone defense.
For more information about researching presidential documents, see the Library’s research guide.