Is it really impossible to pick a perfect bracket for March Madness?
Well yes, its extremely unlikely for anyone to pick a perfect bracket. March Madness, also known as the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, consists of 68 teams playing a single-elimination tournament over several weeks. This means that there are 2^67 possible ways the tournament could play out, which is over 147 quintillion (147,000,000,000,000,000,000) potential brackets.
While there have been many attempts to pick the perfect bracket, no one has ever been able to achieve it. In fact, the odds of picking a perfect bracket are estimated to be around 1 in 9.2 quintillion, making it one of the most difficult achievements in sports betting.
However, there have been several instances where individuals have come close to picking a perfect bracket. In 2019, for example, a sports fane from Ohio correctly predicted the outcomes of the first 49 games of the tournament before finally getting one wrong. This was the longest anyone had ever gone with a perfect bracket in the history of the tournament.
Gregg Nigl is a 40-year-old neuropsychologist who lives in Columbus, Ohio, and gained national attention for his remarkable achievement in the NCAA Tournament bracket. Despite being an avid sports fan, Nigl never thought that his bracket would be perfect, let alone the best verifiable bracket filled out in the history of March Madness.
Despite his impressive achievement, Nigl’s bracket was finally busted when Purdue beat Tennessee in overtime in the Sweet 16 round. Nevertheless, Nigl’s accomplishment was remarkable, considering the extremely low probability of correctly predicting every game in a single-elimination tournament like March Madness.
When Nigl was reached by the media, he was surprised to learn that his bracket was still perfect after the first two rounds of the tournament. He had no idea that he was on the verge of setting a new record for the most correct picks in the history of the tournament. In fact, Nigl had not even been paying much attention to his bracket, as he was busy with work and his family.
As a neuropsychologist, Nigl is no stranger to the science of probability and the workings of the human brain. In an interview, he talked about the importance of taking calculated risks and not letting emotions cloud one’s judgment. He also emphasized the role of luck in sports and acknowledged that his perfect bracket was the result of a combination of skill, knowledge, and luck.
Nigl’s achievement shows that anyone can have a perfect bracket, regardless of their background or level of expertise. It also highlights the excitement and unpredictability of March Madness, where even the most unlikely outcomes can happen.
The March Madness Tournament is set to tip off in less than two weeks. There are many ways to fill out your next bracket and win money or gain wide spread media attention like Nigl did in 2019.
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