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March Madness Rule Guide and Tips to Winning your Bracket

Whether you are a sports fan or not, it is safe to say the month of March creates a fun and competitive atmosphere within our workplaces and amongst our friends.

During this time, you may be bombarded with a question like “Have you finished your March Madness Bracket yet?” or “What teams did you pick for the Final Four?”

Some people will give you a quick answer and some will stare at you like a deer in the headlights, but that’s okay.

If you are that person and want to try and compete because your job is offering a hundred dollar prize for whoever wins, then knowing how the tournament works and its rules will surely give you a level playing field and the upper hand against your peers.

So, what is the March Madness tournament?

March Madness is the NCAA Men's College Basketball Division One Tournament. A total of 68 teams are selected and compete in a seven-round single-elimination format for the National Championship.

The selection process starts on March 12, where the selection committee will reveal all the teams playing and their appropriate seeding in the bracket.

A team gets selected in one of two ways. The first is an automatic bid for the 32 teams that win their conference tournament. The second is an invitation for a large bid, where the selection committee will decide the other 36 teams who have proven enough and have what it takes to stake their spot in the tournament.

Once this process concludes, each team will find themselves divided into four regions of the bracket. This will reveal their first round matchups and path they have to take to win it all.

Now that you have most of the important information at your disposal, let's get back to the fun part when your boss invites you to fill out a bracket for the tournament.

If you are playing digitally on your phone or writing on a printable bracket, the rules remain the same. Choose the team you think has the best chance to win and keep in mind their ranking (the little number beside their name) when deciding who moves forward.

Now it is important to note that just because they are ranked higher doesn't mean they will win. Every year the tournament has underdogs who beat top seeded teams to knock them off and create their own adventurous path to the tournament's final rounds.

In the end it is truly a guessing game and the unpredictable nature of March Madness is what makes it fun for all people.

If you are competitive and like to win then this is just for you. It’s also a great way to break the ice with co-workers you don't know as well or who you have never met. With that said, March is here and don't miss your chance to enjoy one of the best times of the year.

Dean is a graduate of Loyola Marymount University and majored in Broadcast Journalism. He is an avid sports fan and his favorite teams are the Milwaukee Bucks and Cincinnati Bengals. On his free time, Dean loves spending time with his four siblings and helping out at his family owned business called Donut Town Highland. Dean hopes to become a sports agent and represent some of his favorite athletes.