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march madness

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Men's Division I Basketball Tournament is a single-elimination tournament played each spring in the United States, currently featuring 68 college basketball teams, to determine the national championship of the major college basketball teams. The tournament, organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), was created during 1939 by the National Association of Basketball Coaches, and was the idea of Ohio State University coach Harold Olsen.[1] Played mostly during March, it is known informally as March Madness or the Big Dance, and has become one of the most famous annual sporting events in the United States. The NCAA has credited Bob Walsh of the Seattle Organizing Committee for starting the March Madness celebration during 1984.[2]

The tournament teams include champions from 32 Division I conferences (which receive automatic bids), and 36 teams which are awarded at-large berths. These "at-large" teams are chosen by an NCAA selection committee in a nationally televised event on the Sunday preceding the First Four play-in games, currently held in Dayton, Ohio, and dubbed Selection Sunday, as detailed below. The 68 teams are divided into four regions and organized into a single elimination "bracket", which pre-determines, when a team wins a game, which team it will face next. Each team is "seeded", or ranked, within its region from 1 to 16. After an initial four games between eight lower-ranked teams, the tournament occurs during the course of three weekends, at pre-selected neutral sites across the United States. Teams, seeded by rank, proceed through a single game elimination bracket beginning with a first round consisting of 64 teams, to a "Sweet Sixteen", and for the last weekend of the tournament, a Final Four. The Final Four is usually played during the first weekend of April. These four teams, one from each region (East, South, Midwest, and West), compete in one centralized location for the national championship.

The tournament has been at least partially televised since 1969.[3] Currently, the games are broadcast by CBS, TBS, TNT, and truTV by the trade-name NCAA March Madness. Since 2011, all games are available for viewing nationwide and internationally, such as in the Philippines and Canada. As television coverage has grown, so too has the tournament's popularity. Currently, millions of Americans fill out a bracket,[4] attempting to correctly predict the outcome of all 67 games of the tournament.

With 11 national titles, UCLA has the record for the most NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championships; John Wooden coached UCLA to 10 of its 11 titles. The University of Kentucky is 2nd, with 8 national titles, while the University of North Carolina, Duke University, and Indiana University are tied for 3rd with 5 national titles. The University of Connecticut is 6th with 4 national titles. After that the University of Kansas and University of Louisville are tied with 3 championships. Since 2000, Duke and Connecticut have each won three championships; Florida and North Carolina have won two championships; Maryland, Michigan State, and Syracuse, among others, have each won one championship.