Bally Bracket Puts $100M On Line For Perfect March Madness Bracket

Home » Bally Bracket Puts $100M On Line For Perfect March Madness Bracket

Posted on: March 8, 2022, 10:49h. 

Last updated on: March 8, 2022, 11:22h.

It’s the holy grail of sports predictions, and one that remains consistently elusive. But Bally’s Corp. will dole out $100 million to anyone that can correctly pick all 63 games in the upcoming NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament.

Bally Bracket
Baylor players celebrate winning the 2021 NCAA Tournament. Bally Bracket will award $100 million for a perfect tournament bracket. (Image: NCAA)

The gaming company’s digital gaming unit, Bally’s Interactive, is running the free-to-play Bally Bracket, leveraging its relationship with Sinclair Broadcast Group to promote the game. In November 2020, the casino operator struck an agreement to attach its name to 21 regional sports networks (RSNs) owned by Sinclair. At the time, it was one of the boldest gaming/media partnerships.

Bally Bracket will also award $100,000 in additional cash prizes, given out at random and in the following increments: (i) one $50,000 winner; (ii) one $25,000 winner; (iii) two $10,000 winners; and (iv) one $5,000 winner,” according to a statement issued by the Rhode Island-based gaming company.

The NCAA Tournament, colloquially known as March Madness, is one of the most wagered-on events in the US each year. It’s estimated that $10 billion is bet annually on the event, including the ubiquitous office pools and the like.

Bally’s Not Sticking Its Neck Out

Awarding $100 million for a contest winner seems lavish, and it is. To put that figure into context, it’s 6.2 percent of the company’s equity market capitalization.

Still, Bally’s isn’t taking much of risk by dangling a $100 million prize for a perfect bracket, because the odds of someone accomplishing that feat are significantly longer than a person being struck by lightening or winning the lottery, and that’s not hyperbole. The number of possible outcomes on the bracket is 9.2 quintillion, according to the NCAA.

“If we treated the odds for each game as a coin flip, that makes the odds of picking all 63 games correctly 1 in 9.2 quintillion. Again, this is not a completely accurate representation of the odds, as any knowledge of the sport or tournament’s history improves your chances of picking games,” notes the college athletics governing body.

For someone that’s knowledgeable on college hoops, the odds of a perfect bracket shorten to a still- staggering 1 in 120.2 billion.

Even Bally’s acknowledges, “Nobody has ever predicted a perfect bracket since the field expanded to 64 teams in 1985.”

Good Marketing Gimmick

For Bally’s, the contest is an avenue to leverage free-to-play games provider SportCaller, which it acquired in February 2021, as well as its relationship with Sinclair.

It could also be an effective avenue for the gaming company to harvest email addresses and use that information to convert Bally Bracket participants to online sports bettors in states where the company offers that service or lure those players to its land-based casinos.

As for the particulars of a perfect bracket, it’s not uncommon for some participants to make it through the opening weekend without a loss. Some even make it through the round of 32 unscathed. But statistically speaking, the Sweet 16 is where perfect brackets go to die.

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