And then there was … none. As in, not a single perfect men’s NCAA Tournament bracket remains after what has been an incredible opening round of March Madness.
The NCAA Tournament saw an absurd nine upsets by double-digit-seeded teams, plus No. 7 Oregon’s advancement into the second round after 10-seed VCU was struck with COVID-19 issues. Moreover, five teams seeded no higher than 12 won their opening game, breaking the previous record (four), set in the 2008 men’s NCAA Tournament.
And all it took was 28 games, four games shy of a full 32 for the opening round: According to the NCAA, the final straw was a victory by 10-seed Maryland over 7-seed UConn. The Terrapins’ 63-54 win eliminated the final three brackets that existed out there in the world.
The biggest blemish among millions of brackets is likely the upset by 15-seed Oral Roberts over 2-seed Ohio State. The Golden Eagles’ 75-72 overtime win against the Buckeyes — the No. 6 overall team in the tournament — was the first significant blow.
But it wasn’t the last.
On the same day, 13-seed North Texas and 12-seed Oregon State beat 4-seed Purdue and 5-seed Tennessee, respectively, further ruining would-be perfection. By the end of play on Friday, only 121 perfect brackets remained out of roughly 20 million. By the time play concluded Saturday, zero perfect brackets existed.
Here’s a rundown of how many remained after each game on Saturday:
- After Friday: 121 perfect brackets
- After Colorado-Georgetown: 72
- After Florida State-UNC Greensboro: 56
- After Kansas-Eastern Washington: 50
- After LSU-St. Bonaventure: 23
- After Michigan-Texas Southern: 22
- After Creighton-UC Santa Barbara: 18
- After Alabama-Iona: 18
- After USC-Drake: 12
- After Oregon-VCU no contest: Eight
- After Iowa-Grand Canyon: Eight
- After Ohio-Virginia: Three
- After Maryland-UConn: None
The win by 13-seed Ohio over 4-seed Virginia was a significant blow to the remaining perfect brackets, reducing the field by more than half (eight to three). After Maryland beat UConn, none remained. So we don’t even get to count the win by 14-seed Abilene Christian over 3-seed Texas.
Whether that upset would have been part of the remaining three brackets, we’ll never know.
Are there any perfect brackets left in 2021?
Nope! This has been verified by the NCAA, which had a handy GIF to explain the situation:
What percentage of brackets are still perfect?
Let’s see … oh, right. Zero percent.
Perfect March Madness bracket odds
Here are the odds for the NCAA Tournament finishing with at least one perfect bracket: +000. Or, if you prefer, 0/0.
What is the longest a bracket stayed perfect?
Per the NCAA, three brackets remained perfect through 27 games, but no longer. Again, thank Maryland for that.