Because we can’t have real sports right now, and especially since we’re all missing out on March Madness (emphasis on MISSING), ESPN decided to simulate the 2020 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament using Joe Lunardi’s final bracket and their own Basketball Power Index (BPI).
Now, I can’t guarantee that the results of ESPN’s March Madness simulation will make you any happier than the one the Washington Post did the other day, but at least ESPN’s projected national champion isn’t loathed by a significant portion of the college sports fanbase.
According to ESPN, the pre-tournament favorites were…
• Kansas 18%
• Duke 17%
• Gonzaga 15%
• Michigan State 10%
• Dayton 7%
• Baylor 6%
• Ohio State 3%
• San Diego State 3%
• Louisville 3%
• Maryland 2%
However, as we all are very well aware, going with the chalk when filling out your bracket is almost without fail a recipe for disaster and that was the case once again in ESPN’s simulation.
Here’s how it all went down.
No. 12 Liberty over No. 5 Auburn
No. 14 Hofstra over No. 3 Villanova
No. 12 Yale over No. 5 Michigan
No. 10 Texas Tech over No. 7 Arizona
No. 14 Bradley over No. 3 Michigan State
No. 10 USC over No. 7 Illinois
No. 9 Marquette over No. 1 Kansas
No. 7 Providence over No. 2 Kentucky
No. 12 Yale over No. 4 Oregon
No. 6 BYU over No. 3 Seton Hall
No. 8 Saint Mary’s over No. 1 Baylor
No. 12 Yale over No. 1 Gonzaga
ELITE EIGHT RESULTS
No. 4 Wisconsin over No. 3 Duke
No. 4 Maryland over No. 7 West Virginia
No. 6 BYU over No. 12 Yale (Finally)
No. 6 Virginia over No. 5 Ohio State
FINAL FOUR RESULTS
No. 4 Wisconsin over No. 4 Maryland
No. 6 BYU over No. 6 Virginia
No. 4 Wisconsin over No. 6 BYU
BYU was actually favored, but 16 points from Nate Reuvers and coach Greg Gard’s strategy were too much to overcome.
So there you have it. The Badgers of Wisconsin are your 2020 NCAA Men’s Basketball National Champions! Sort of.
Check out the entire tournament simulation over at ESPN.com.