Just 42,828 perfect brackets remain in ESPN’s Tournament Challenge after one day of March Madness.Matt Marriott/NCAA Photos via Getty Images
- The first day of March Madness action is in the books.
- Thursday didn’t see any huge upsets, with No. 12 Murray State being the lowest-ranked team of the day to pull off a first-round win.
- Despite this, brackets across the country were busted, as just 42,828 perfect brackets remain in ESPN’s Tournament Challenge.
March Madness is the most unpredictable event in all of sports.
Though many contests through the years have advertised larger-than-life prizes, the quest for a “perfect bracket” that correctly predicts the winner of all 63 games of the tournament is an all but impossible endeavor that we will likely never see in our lifetime.
Case in point — after just one day of March Madness action, just 0.25% of brackets in ESPN’s Tournament Challenge remain perfect, according to ESPN Stats & Info. More than 17.2 million brackets were submitted to ESPN this year, and of them, only 42,828 were able to nail the first 16 games of the tournament.
That low perfection percentage comes despite the fact that there were hardly any big upsets through the first day of the tournament. No. 12 Murray State was the lowest-seeded team to win their opening game on Thursday, and they came into the tournament as on of the most popular upset picks in the tournament.
Other than the Racers’ upset victory, just three teams — No. 10 Florida, No. 10 Minnesota, and No. 9 Baylor — defeated a team with a higher seed.
In other words, despite an extremely calm first day of action in terms of upsets, just one in every 400 brackets was able to make it through the first day without a loss.
With another full slate of games set for Friday and likely an even more unpredictable set of outcomes, chances are that numbers dwindles even quicker as we head into the second round of the tournament.
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