It's time, once again, to fill out your bracket for March Madness—a task that can prove challenging if you have, perhaps, not watched as much NCAA men's basketball as the superfans out there. But don't fret, we've got you covered with a few helpful tips from the experts.
Here's a quick breakdown of some of the key information you should know for the NCAA Men's basketball tournament that is scheduled to get going on Tuesday.
The top upset picks
-Over at SB Nation, staff experts picked a number of upsets, some of which they considered fairly likely, while others were more far-fetched. They thought 12-seed Davidson might have a real shot over 5-seed Kentucky, for instance, because Davidson is a fantastic shooting team that might cause issues for the higher-ranked team coached by John Calipari. They also gave 12-seed New Mexico State a shot to beat 5-seed Clemson because the Aztecs play great defense. It seemed like they almost favored 10-seed Texas over 7-seed Nevada as well as 10-seed Oklahoma over 7-seed Rhode Island.
-Sports Illustrated put together a pretty comprehensive guide to March Madness. They picked 15-seed Georgia State as a team that could potentially bust everyone's bracket—that's not saying they picked them to win, but they did say it's possible. They also thought 9-seed Alabama had a shot to make some noise.
-CBS Sports published an upset prediction piece that used SportsLine Projection Model, which has had decent success at calling the upsets the last couple of years. It reported that the most likely major upset was 3-seed Texas Tech falling to 14-seed Stephen F. Austin. The piece from CBS also predicted 10-seed Butler would topple 7-seed Arkansas.
So who is going to win it all? Well, it depends on who you ask. Vegas seems to believe 1-seed Villanova had the best shot, giving the Wildcasts +450 odds to win the championship, according to Odds Shark. After that the top 10 was rounded out by Virginia (+500), Duke (+650), Michigan State (+750), Michigan (+1000), Arizona (+1200), Kansas (+1200), Purdue (+1500), North Carolina (+1800) and Cincinnati (+2200).
Here are some expert picks for winning the whole thing:
-ESPN's Myron Medcalf picked 3-seed Michigan State to take it all.
-Sporting News' Bill Bender had 1-seed Virginia as his winner.
-SB Nation's Ricky O'Donnell had 1-seed Villanova.
-Mike Hume of The Washington Post, using an efficiency statistic that measures current teams to past NCAA champions, pegged Virginia as the most likely winner, followed by Villanova and 2-seed Duke.
-Over at CBS Sports, college basketball insider Gary Parrish had Duke, senior writer Matt Norland had Virigina and bracketology expert Jerry Palm had Duke.
-The data nerds at FiveThirtyEight, meanwhile, gave Virginia the best shot of winning at 18 percent with Villanova not far behind at 17 percent.
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