March Madness 2013: Final Bracket Rankings

April 9, 2013  |  Sports

Here are our final 2013 March Madness bracket rankings. We scored 32 pundits from ESPN, Yahoo, Sports Illustrated, and CBS Sports, throwing in President Obama for good fun. For a recap of the the first two rounds, see this post.

The following table ranks the pundits based on their average “Yield” of their 63 total picks. As a reminder, the Yield measures the average payout, using Vegas futures odds, had you placed $1 bets on each of the pundit’s selections. This approach fits well with March Madness, since it mimics bracket scoring systems that award extra points for predicting upsets. Hit Rate is simply the % of predictions that were correct. Given the large number of upsets this year, the rankings by Hit Rate and Yield turned out very different (each column is sortable):

PunditHit RateYield
Gregg Doyel, CBS56%$1.26
Jerry Palm, CBS60%$1.12
Seth Greenberg, ESPN63%$1.09
Dick Vitale, ESPN60%$1.07
Jeff Goodman, CBS62%$1.06
Andy Glockner, SI63%$1.06
John Gasaway, ESPN65%$1.04
Joe Lunardi, ESPN60%$1.04
Brad Evans, Yahoo60%$1.03
Pete Gillen, SI60%$1.03
Jeff Eisenberg, Yahoo62%$1.02
Peter Tiernan, CBS63%$1.01
Alaa Abdelnaby, CBS59%$1.00
Wally Szczerbiak, CBS62%$1.00
"Chalk" (higher seed)62%$1.00
Mateen Cleaves, CBS60%$0.99
Pete Thamel, CBS60%$0.98
Gary Parrish, CBS60%$0.97
Matt Norlander, CBS54%$0.97
Jay Bilas, ESPN60%$0.97
Barack Obama60%$0.97
Dennis Dodd, CBS48%$0.96
Vegas Favorites60%$0.95
Greg Anthony, Yahoo56%$0.92
Luke Winn, SI56%$0.91
Dan Wetzel, Yahoo60%$0.91
Stewart Mandel, SI56%$0.90
Seth Davis, SI52%$0.87
Pat Forde, Yahoo54%$0.86
Jeff Borzello, CBS52%$0.86
Kelli Anderson, SI54%$0.85
Andy Katz, ESPN51%$0.77
Michael Wilbon, ESPN44%$0.75
Doug Gottlieb, CBS51%$0.74
Colin Cowherd, ESPN49%$0.68

Gregg Doyel of CBS had the highest yielding bracket, despite not picking Louisville to win it all, mostly because he was the only one of the 32 pundits to have Michigan in the Finals (a strong out-of-consensus pick). When ranked by Hit Rate, John Gasaway of ESPN turned in the best performance, hitting on 41 of his 63 picks.

The worst brackets belonged to Colin Cowherd, Michael Wilbon, Andy Katz, and Doug Gottlieb. Cowherd and Wilbon both got less than half their picks right, while all four of these pundits would have lost you more than 20% of your money had you bet on their picks.

Overall, about half the pundits turned in a positive Yield and outperformed just picking all chalk. Only three had Michigan in Final Four, while only two had Syracuse. 25 of the 32 had Louisville winning it all.

Finally, here are the cumulative rankings for the pundits for whom we tracked brackets in both 2012 and 2013.

PunditHit Rate
(2012 & 13)
(2012 & 13)
Jeff Goodman, CBS65%$1.13
Peter Tiernan, CBS66%$1.12
Jay Bilas, ESPN67%$1.10
Barack Obama66%$1.10
Gregg Doyel, CBS55%$1.09
Jerry Palm, CBS61%$1.08
Joe Lunardi, ESPN60%$1.00
Matt Norlander, CBS56%$0.99
Dick Vitale, ESPN59%$0.97
Jeff Borzello, CBS57%$0.97
Andy Glockner, SI60%$0.96
Gary Parrish, CBS60%$0.95
Luke Winn, SI58%$0.95
Brad Evans, Yahoo57%$0.95
Dennis Dodd, CBS51%$0.92
Dan Wetzel, Yahoo61%$0.91
Stewart Mandel, SI56%$0.88
Pat Forde, Yahoo54%$0.88
Seth Davis, SI53%$0.86
Colin Cowherd, ESPN57%$0.85
Andy Katz, ESPN54%$0.82

We will be officially adding all these brackets to in the coming weeks. In the meantime, there are still a few days left to get your predictions in for the 2013 MLB Season as well as make some NFL Draft related picks. Visit our Sports Page now to do so — just click on the Vote Now buttons.





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