NCAA Tournament Computer Forecast

TAMPA, FL - MARCH 17: A banner with the Men's NCAA Basketball Tournament BRacket is seen during the second round of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at St. Pete Times Forum on March 17, 2011 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)


After the resounding success and unrivaled popularity of my Texas high school football playoff probability forecasts, it was quite clear to me that I would need to post the equivalent table for the NCAA basketball tournament. As always, recall the usual disclaimers: based on the whole season, all games count equally, matchups not considered, based on standard power ratings plus a team's standard deviation in performance, and perhaps most importantly - if you use this forecast to gamble and lose money then you're the idiot, not me.

I'm an idiot for an entirely different set of reasons.

So here's the bracket forecast, and my thoughts are below.

Kentucky is the expected favorite, but Ohio State is the second most likely to win the tournament in this analysis. The Buckeyes are the favorite to emerge from the East region even without consideration given to Fab Melo's absence for Syracuse.

Predicted seed upsets in the first round (don't care what the NCAA calls it): (11) Texas over (6) Cincinnati in the East, (9) Alabama over (8) Creighton, (10) Purdue over (7) St. Mary's, and (11) North Carolina St. over (6) San Diego St. in the Midwest.

If you don't like the formatting, I am hiring for an unpaid table formatting intern position. Let me know.

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