Utah family creates ‘Mascot Madness’ app for kids and those who don’t follow sports

Posted at 10:19 PM, Mar 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-17 00:20:40-04

PROVO, Utah -- The heart of March Madness is right around the corner, and time is running out to fill out your brackets.

One Provo family is making it so your children, and those who may not be into sports, can get into the competition with their app, Mascot Madness.

“Some people really, really get into March Madness,” said Alene Cutler.

The Cutler family are some of "those people.”

“We'd even have our kids do them when they were really little," she said. "We'd say, 'OK, if they touch the book that means this team, if they touch the ball that means this team,” Alene said.

As their boys got older, team names didn't mean a thing to their toddlers. But when Alene and her husband Kelv talked mascots, they reacted.

“'This team is a tiger and this team, these are bulldogs, who do you think would win between a tiger and a bulldog?' And we realized it was a lot more meaningful and a lot more fun for them,” Alene said.

That moment was the spark the Provo family needed to create the app, Mascot Madness.

“It works for kids and for people who like the sports, and for those who aren't really into sports too,” Kelv said.

To fill out a bracket, all you have to do is pick a mascot.

“There are 67 choices they have to sit through and make" Kelv said. "And those 67 choices can get long and strenuous if you are a little kid."

The Cutlers say Mascot Madness makes the bracket process easy for kids. With fun artwork, stars, trophies and rewards.

“Our 5-year-old has probably put together eight or nine brackets, he considers it a game and he just keeps playing it,” Alene said.

The app even helps kids with their strategy. But, instead of seeds, it gives each team a strength indicator.

“It's a little bar with a meter lit up for how strong they are, and I think that is very helpful for the kids to make just a little bit better of a bracket,” Kelv said.

In the two days since the app hit the market, it has had hundreds of downloads. And a lot of comments from users.

“Thanks to you, instead of spending an hour getting my two girls to fill out the bracket painstakingly, it turned into a two minute game on the device,” Kelv said of one of those comments.