March Madness Money: Here's How Much Could Be Bet On The 2023 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament

Zinger Key Points
  • The NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament will have games aired on CBS, TNT, TBS and truTV.
  • A look at how many people plan on watching games and placing bets.

People across the country are filling out their March Madness brackets and doing research on which basketball teams will advance to the Final Four and win the National Championship.

While the games played throughout the tournament could mean missed productivity for workers, it means big bucks for sports betting platforms.

What Happened: The 2023 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament could see $15.5 billion in wagers across sports betting platforms, among friends and through bracket competitions. The new estimate comes a year after the Kansas Jayhawks defeated the North Carolina Tar Heels to win the championship.

A report from the American Gaming Association said 68 million Americans are expected to wager on the games this year. The estimates break down as the following, with some selecting more than one option:

31 million American adults bet with sportsbooks

21.5 million Americans bet casually with friends

56.3 million Americans participate in bracket competitions

“March Madness is one of the best traditions in American sports — and America’s most wagered-on competition,” American Gaming Association CEO Bill Miller said. “Critically, the expansion of regulated sports betting over the past five years has brought safeguards to more than half of American adults who can now bet legally in their home market.”

The report said that 75% of online bettors said 2023 would be their first time betting on the tournament online.

States such as Kansas, Massachusetts and Ohio have legalized retail and online sports betting since the end of the 2022 NCAA Men’s National Tournament. A total of 33 states and Washington D.C. have legal sports betting markets, covering 57% of the adult population in America.

Along with a strong interest in betting on the March Madness tournament, a study from Morning Consult shows that more Americans plan to watch games this year, marking the first increase in a study of intent to watch year-over-year since 2018.

Around 35% of U.S. adults said they plan on watching the NCAA Men’s Tournament, up 6% from last year’s survey.

The interest in watching the games could be good news for Paramount Global PARAPARAA and Warner Bros. Discovery Inc WBD which share television coverage.

CBS, a unit of Paramount, will broadcast the Final Four and Championship Game on April 1 and April 3, respectively, giving it the potential biggest benefit.

Related Link: Perfect March Madness Bracket? Don't Count On It: The Longshot And Potential Impossible Odds 

What’s Next: March Madness will have 68 teams compete across 67 games during the three-week tournament with one team being crowned the national champion.

The last five tournaments have seen a No. 1 seed crowned national champion with No. 1-seeded Kansas beating No. 8-seeded North Carolina last year.

The 2023 No. 1 seeds are Alabama, Houston, Purdue and Kansas. With a win, Kansas could be the first back-to-back winner since the Florida Gators in 2006 and 2007.

The current champion odds from DraftKings Inc DKNG, with seed in parenthesis are:

Houston (1): +450

Alabama (1): +650

UCLA (2): +1000

Purdue (1): +1100

Kansas (1): +1200

Texas (2): +1400

Gonzaga (3): +1400

Arizona (2): +1400

Connecticut (4): +1800

Marquette (2): +2000

There is no clear betting favorite as in years past. The preseason No. 1 team was North Carolina, after a runner-up performance in 2022. North Carolina failed to qualify for the NCAA Tournament in 2023, marking the first No. 1 preseason pick to not qualify since the field expanded in 1985.

The 2022 tournament was filled with excitement and upsets despite a number one seed cutting down the nets. North Carolina was an eight seed in the tournament when it advanced to the final.

A matchup in the Final Four saw a historic rivalry between Duke and North Carolina face each other for the first time in NCAA Tournament history. The game was so highly anticipated that a musician canceled his concert to attend the game.

The biggest storyline in 2022 was likely Saint Peter’s, a 15-seed that went on to win several games, becoming the third 15-seed to ever advance to the Sweet 16 and the first to make it to the Elite 8.

Read Next: This Bettor Turned $1 Into Massive Winnings On A 25-Team College Basketball Parlay

Photo: Shutterstock

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