How To Build A Unique March Madness Bracket For NCAA Tournament

How To Build A Unique March Madness Bracket For NCAA Tournament article feature image

Ben Solomon/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

The best way to gain an edge against the field is to compare the projected chance for a team to win against how many ESPN and Yahoo brackets that team is picked in. This is called Leverage — i.e. the percent difference between the two — which we use to bet on outcomes that are more likely than the public realizes.

A sound bracket strategy takes advantage of these discrepancies while also knowing when to forego Leverage for the more likely outcome. You can see how I try to find that balance in the breakdown of my bracket here, but below we’ll run through how to use Leverage for various potential strategies in each region.

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A good rule of thumb before we begin: Any team with a three-game stretch of bright green I am very interested in. And any team with a three-game stretch of bright red means it might be worth fading them to gain a leg up on the field.

Also, you do not have to take every single potential upset I’m about to flag. But if you aren’t building your bracket around at least a couple … why are you even making a bracket?!

Note: All the following Leverage scores reflect the difference between my projected chances for each team to win each round and how many ESPN/Yahoo users have picked them as of Tuesday.

March Madness Bracket Leverage

This sheet features the round-by-round Leverage score for every team in all four regions. Be sure to download my Bracket Builder to customize Leverage scores based on the different possible outcomes.