Thursday, April 18, 2024

NCAA Tournament 2024 bracket: Computer simulation predicts surprising upsets, March Madness picks and sleepers

With the 2024 NCAA Tournament officially here, it is an opportunity for redemption for the West’s No. 2 seed, the Arizona Wildcats, who fell to No. 15 Princeton in 2023. The Wildcats have not made a Final Four since 2001 and the expectations are high for Tommy Lloyd’s squad led by Pac-12 Player of the Year Caleb Love and center Oumar Ballo. With a relatively soft draw on paper, Arizona looks to be one of the favorites in the 2024 March Madness bracket, especially with the Final Four being played only two hours from their campus in Glendale, Arizona.

Before you fill out your 2024 NCAA Tournament bracket, which teams are the safest 2024 March Madness picks to advance to the second weekend and beyond? Which higher seeds are upset candidates and which teams are the most likely 2024 March Madness Cinderella candidates? Before you make your 2024 NCAA Tournament predictions, see the March Madness bracket picks from the proven computer model at SportsLine.

This model, which simulates every game 10,000 times, has nailed 20 first-round upsets by double-digit seeds since its inception in 2016 and nailed UConn’s dramatic Final Four run as a 4-seed last year. It went an amazing 22-10 in the first round, including an astounding 12-4 in the Midwest and West regions.

Last year, SportsLine’s computer simulation nailed massive upsets, including huge wins by No. 13 Furman over No. 4 Virginia and No. 10 Penn State over No. 7 Texas A&M. The model has beaten over 92% of all CBS Sports bracket players in three of the past five tournaments.

Now, SportsLine’s advanced computer model has simulated the entire 2024 NCAA Tournament 10,000 times to come up with the perfect 2024 NCAA Tournament bracket and find out which teams will pull off the biggest upsets. You shouldn’t even think about making a pick without seeing what their model has to say.

Top 2024 March Madness bracket upset picks

One Midwest Region surprise the model has identified: No. 11 Oregon knocks off No. 6 South Carolina. The Ducks, who went 23-11 in the Pac-12, beat No. 4 seed UCLA, No. 1 seed Arizona, and No. 3 seed Colorado to earn the conference’s automatic bid. Center N’Faly Dante was unstoppable, making 25 of his 30 shots during those three games in Las Vegas, scoring 61 points and grabbing 25 rebounds.

The Ducks, under veteran coach Dana Altman, are accustomed to winning both higher scoring and grind-it-out games, as might be the case against a defensive-minded South Carolina team on Thursday.

Another Midwest Region surprise the model has identified: No. 3 Creighton defeats 2-seed Tennessee and 1-seed Purdue on its way to the program’s first NCAA Tournament Final Four appearance. The model is high on Creighton’s strong guard play, led by guards Baylor Scheierman (18.4 points per game) and Trey Alexander (17.6).

Center Ryan Kalkbrenner averaged 17.1 points and 7.4 rebounds, trailing only Scheierman in rebounding (9.0 per game). Kalkbrenner won the Big East’s Defensive Player of the Year award and averages three blocks per game. With a well-rounded starting lineup, coach Greg McDermott has his team poised to make the leap in 2024. See which other 2024 March Madness matchups to target here.

How to make 2024 NCAA Tournament bracket predictions

Who wins every tournament-defining matchup? And which teams will make surprising runs through the 2024 NCAA Tournament bracket? With the model’s track record of calling bracket-busting upsets, you’ll want to see which stunners it’s calling this year before locking in any 2024 NCAA bracket picks.

So what’s the optimal NCAA Tournament 2024 bracket? And which NCAA Tournament Cinderella teams will shock college basketball? Visit SportsLine to see which 12-seed reaches the Sweet 16, and which region features a 10-seed, 11-seed, and 13-seed delivering first-round shockers and has a 9-seed in the Elite Eight, all from the model that has beaten 92% of bracket players three of the last five tournaments.

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