The field for the 2023 NCAA Tournament was officially unveiled on Selection Sunday with 68 teams punching their tickets. With March Madness set to get underway later this week, every college basketball fan around the world will attempt to test their acumen by filling out a bracket.
While everyone starts out with hope that they can fill out a perfect bracket, it's actually much, much more difficult than anyone could ever imagine.
According to NCAA.com, the odds are 1 in 120.2 billion that you can fill out a perfect March Madness bracket.
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Since the 2010-11 season, the NCAA Tournament has been operating with 68 teams in its field. Eight of those teams that participating are in the "First Four" -- the first four games that take place on Tuesday and Wednesday. Most March Madness bracket challenges don't count those particular games, so you're only picking each of those games' winners vs. their scheduled opponent in the field of 64 once the action begins on Thursday and Friday.
When it comes to filling out a bracket, there are 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 or 9.2 quintillion possible outcomes. In other words... a lot of chances to pick an incorrect outcome.
Of course, people operate under many different strategies when it comes to filling out their brackets. Some have followed college basketball for years and remember the historic runs of No. 16 seed UMBC in 2018 and No. 15 seed Saint Peter's in 2022. However, there's others that hardly watch the sport and just throw darts at the board to see what sticks.
No matter what your strategy is, just know that the odds of cultivating the perfect bracket are astronomically slim.
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