How Many Brackets Are Filled Out for March Madness?

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An estimated 60 million people fill out March Madness brackets every year, according to a 2014 article from Smithsonian Magazine. The NCAA basketball tournament breeds a significant amount of financial activity as well, with an estimated $1 billion spent on casual bets on the games and the tournament as a whole.

According to Smithsonian Magazine, the brackets and even general public interest in the playoff tournament is a relatively recent phenomenon, beginning to gain popularity in the 1970s. Prior to this period, the NCAA basketball tournament was either mostly confusing to outsiders or a foregone conclusion, with the UCLA team winning 10 championships in 12 years, starting in 1964.