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College Basketball - Men's

Tournament Challenge Brackets Return to ESPN.com for the 19th Consecutive Year

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Newly Redesigned ESPN Tournament Challenge App Available for iOS and Android

Comprehensive Coverage of the 2016 NCAA Men’s & Women’s Basketball Tournament on ESPN.com, espnW.com, FiveThirtyEight.com and ESPN Insider

Brackets are back on ESPN.com with sign-ups now open for its popular free ESPN Men’s Tournament Challenge presented by Acura, Allstate and Microsoft and ESPN Women’s Tournament Challenge presented by Capital One games.  Fans will be able to research and strategize their brackets via in-depth coverage from ESPN.com’s college basketball experts and analysts, with news and predictor and analyzer tools exclusively available to ESPN Insider members.

ESPN Tournament Challenge 2016
ESPN Men’s Tournament Challenge and ESPN Women’s Tournament Challenge both return for their 19th seasons and will once again be free for entrants to submit up to 10 entries on ESPN.com.  At the end of the tournament, all Men’s Tournament Challenge entries that finish in the top 1% are entered in a random drawing to win a trip for two to the 2016 Maui Jim Maui Invitational and a $10,000 Amazon Gift Card prize.  In the Women’s Tournament Challenge, entries that finish in the top 1% are entered in a random drawing for a $3,000 Amazon Gift Card.  Entries for the Men’s Tournament Challenge game will be accepted until just prior to the tip-off of the Tournament’s first game on Thursday, March 17.  The Women’s Tournament Challenge will accept registration until just prior to tip-off of the first game on Friday, March 18.  Guest celebrity brackets will feature a broad array of athletes, actors and ESPN personalities, including Von Miller, Big Sean, Serge Ibaka, The Muppets and many more.

Last year, the Men’s Tournament Challenge game was again the most popular bracket game in the nation, with more than 11.57 million brackets, a new all-time mark that surpasses last year’s record.  At the peak period, fans registered over 15,000 brackets per minute (250 brackets per second), among those of which was a bracket from President Barack Obama.

Newly Redesigned ESPN Tournament Challenge App
With the new ESPN Tournament Challenge app, fans will be able keep track their brackets on the go. Packed with design and feature updates, the Tournament Challenge app includes an all-new vertical bracket, which allows users to navigate through each round of the tournament with a single swipe or skip to specific rounds by tapping the “Region” and “Round” navigations at the top and bottom. A BracketCast tab opens a personalized, live-scoring experience, while in-app alerts keep fans updated on action throughout the tournament.

Creating brackets using the Tournament Challenge app is easier and quicker than ever with the addition of the new “import” feature, which enables fans to create and complete brackets in just a few taps, with enhanced 3D Touch navigation for iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S+ users.

Brackets of friends and family, as well as celebrities, athletes and ESPN personalities can be viewed in the app, which includes dynamic confetti animations and custom images of the team each fan selects as champion, after brackets are submitted.

The app is free-to-download and available for iOS and Android devices.

Comprehensive Coverage Across ESPN Digital Platforms
ESPN.com will provide complete coverage of the men’s tournament from Selection Sunday through the Final Four. The lineup of experts and analysts includes Jeff Borzello, Eamonn Brennan, C.L. Brown, Dan Dakich, Fran Fraschilla, Seth Greenberg, Chantel Jennings, Andy Katz, Chris Low, Joe Lunardi, Myron Medcalf, Dana O’Neil, Mitch Sherman and Jake Trotter, as well as ESPN Insiders Jay Bilas, Jeff Goodman and John Gasaway.  Collectively, they will break down the brackets and provide analysis, commentary and features.  Additionally, ESPN.com’s Basketball Power Index (BPI) will be available for fans to reference the latest power rankings by team to assist in their bracket picks.

espnW.com will also provide news, analysis and commentary throughout the women’s tournament, from Selection Monday through the Women’s Final Four in Indianapolis. Columnists and analysts including Charlie Crème, Graham Hays and Mechelle Voepel will provide expert rankings and predictions, live coverage of each round of games from coast-to-coast and regular video highlights of the matchups.

FiveThirtyEight will feature its annual interactive brackets for the Men’s Tournament Challenge and Women’s Tournament Challenge. The two brackets, based on Editor-in-Chief Nate Silver’s model, calculate the probability of each team’s chances of advancing through the rounds. They incorporate factors such as travel distance, injuries and regular season records. Additionally, FiveThirtyEight will deliver several data-driven stories tied to both tournaments throughout the week.

ESPN Insider will also include a number of additional exclusive features before, during and after the tournament to help break down who gets off the bubble, who is most likely to be this year’s Cinderella and who will be the breakout stars of the tournament.  They include:

  • Bilas’ Bracket: ESPN’s Jay Bilas provides his take on how the tournament will shake out with a comprehensive look at every round;
  • Giant Killers: Insider’s signature analytics model returns for its 10th year of picking the upsets using key statistical markers and team comparisons;
  • Joe Lunardi’s Team Previews: Team-by-team breakdowns of all 68 teams in the field by a team led by ESPN’s Bracketologist;
  • Selection Night Winners and Losers: Jeff Goodman shares his analysis of bracket winners and losers, plus Insider information looking ahead at every matchup in the Round of 32 and beyond;
  • Tournament Truths: Hoops stat guru John Gasaway goes inside the numbers before and after every round of the tournament;

Additional predictor and analyzer tools available exclusively for ESPN Insider members – and all accessible online and on the mobile Web – include:

  • Bracket Predictor – Tournament Edition: A “wizard” style interface leading through the process of making picks for a bracket, giving users predictions and other relevant information for every bracket matchup. Once the user completes all bracket picks in Bracket Predictor, the user will be presented with the option to transmit the completed bracket to ESPN Tournament Challenge;
  • Game Predictor: Provides users with predictions and statistical information for actual or hypothetical basketball matchups within the ESPN Tournament Challenge page, giving users tips and guidance for every matchup without leaving the screen;
  • Bracket Analyzer: Easily import brackets from ESPN’s Tournament Challenge and receive an analysis that demonstrates and predicts areas of possible improvement to better the chances for victory.  The computer generated report includes round-by-round survival odds for all of a user’s game winner picks, the expected number of user picks to be correct, a high level analysis of the risk level of the user’s picks and recommendations for changing certain picks;
  • PickCenter: Offers fans a complete breakdown of each and every game complete with predictions, simulations, odds analysis, line moves, significant injuries and more.
  • Joe Lunardi’s Bracket Predictions: A tool that presents a variety of predictions and odds generated by Team Rankings and based on Lunardi’s projected 2016 tournament bracket, as published in the “Bracketology” section of ESPN.com.

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