ESPN Tournament Challenge Explodes to Record 18.8 Million Brackets
ESPN TC 20th Anniversary LOGOBoosted by the first ever 24-hour Tournament Challenge Marathon earlier this week, the ESPN Men's Tournament Challenge collected a record 18.8 million completed brackets, surpassing the previous mark set last year at 13.0 million. At the peak period of entries this morning, fans registered 31,184 brackets per minute (520 brackets per second), an increase of 69 percent over last year.
By the end of the Tournament Challenge Marathon, which celebrated the 20th anniversary of the most popular tournament bracket game, ESPN collected more than 10 million bracket entries and had its largest one-day total ever with 4.9 million on Wednesday, beating the previous mark of 4.2 million set on Tuesday.
The Men's Tournament Challenge "People's Bracket" - which reflects the percentage of fans picking each match-up throughout the tournament - shows that more people picked Arizona, Kansas, North Carolina, and Villanova to reach the Final Four than any other teams. North Carolina and Villanova are picked to reach the national championship game in a rematch of last year's final, and North Carolina is the most popular pick to win the title.
An analysis of People's Bracket picks for the Round of 64 finds:
- 96.83 percent of brackets choseVillanova over Mount Saint Mary's, the largest of any matchup in any round
- No. 10 Wichita State over No. 7 Dayton is the most picked upset (65.33 percent vs. 34.67 percent)
- The closest matchup was No. 8Northwestern No. 9 Vanderbilt (50.01 percent vs. 49.99 percent)
Potential "Cinderella" Stories (lower-seeded teams picked to make the Sweet 16):
- No. 10 Wichita State (13.82 percent)
- No. 11 Xavier (15.27 percent)
- No. 11 Rhode Island (10.91 percent)
- No. 12 Middle Tennessee State (14.56 percent)
About ESPN Tournament Challenge
In its 20th year, the ESPN's Tournament Challenge game is free and allows fans to submit up to 25 entries each for the Men's and Women's tournament at ESPN.com/bracket or on the ESPN Tournament Challenge App for iOS and Android.