Picking your Bracket
What People Will
Office Pools & Picking Your Bracket
Someone you know has probably asked you to participate
in a March Madness pool. To fill out a bracket,
you write the name of the team that will win the
match-up in each round. The seedings (1-16) are
written next to the name of the school and are
your biggest aid in picking your bracket (low
numbers have greatest chance of advancing). Here
are a couple of strategies you can use to pick
1. The highest seed and modify approach.
Pros: This is the most likely
outcome. Higher seeds have best chance of winning.
The selection committee probably knows more than
you do about the college basketball has structured
the tournament in a “fair” way.
Cons: It’s kind of boring
and your bracket will look like many other people’s
selections. But you won’t look like an idiot.
There will be plenty of upsets and it is unlikely
that all four #1 seeds will advance to the final
My suggestion: Pick one of the
#1 or #2 seeds to win the tournament. Have a minimum
of 1 team that is not a #1 or #2 seed in the final
4 so that you don’t seem completely boring.
2. Steal someone else’s picks, and then
make a few modifications.
Pro: Somebody else puts in the
time and you just make a few tweaks.
Con: It’s not really as
much fun if you use someone else’s picks.
My suggestion: ESPN analysts
usually post a few free
picks online. You can start with this and
make a few changes.
3: Just have fun
Choose a team because their seed is your lucky
number. Choose a team because you or someone you
know went to that school. Here’s the thing:
nobody really knows how this is going to work
out and as long as you are having fun, who cares?
You should note that all upsets are unlikely (for
example, a #16 has never lost to a #1 seed and
the lowest seed to ever win the championship was
a #8 seed).