UMBC pulled off one of the most historic upsets in NCAA Tournament history, but how many people actually picked them?
Whenever something historic happens, someone always goes viral for having predicted it. When the Cubs won the World Series in 2016, a tweet from years which predicted the exact results of the game years before it happened.
A lot of people do this, and not everyone is honest. It’s called prediction scamming, which means you flood your Twitter account with predictions and delete the ones that are wrong. After UMBC beat Virginia, a lot of people claimed to have predicted the game right, tweeting out brackets that could have easily been filled out seconds before.
Luckily, the internet has receipts; specifically ESPN. The Tournament Challenge is one of the most widely used methods of keeping track of your bracket, which means we know where to look for an accurate idea of how many people picked this upset.
To the surprise of no one, the number is not high.
If math isn’t your thing allow us to crunch the numbers. Only 579,666 brackets picked UMBC to beat Virginia.
It’s a small number of brackets to have picked this right, but those who chose UMBC walk among you. Some of them may even work with you. Winter Is Coming’s Dan Selcke correctly picked the upset, as did FanSided newsdesk writer Griffin Youngs. Puck Prose editor Dave Stevenson actually went to UMBC, so these people are actually everywhere.
Not only is that astounding, but it’s proof that this might have been the work of the devil. It’s no coincidence that 576,666 brackets were picked correctly. That’s the mark of the beast, but unfortunately Black Magic is not something that the NCAA currently allows a video review for, so this one is going to stick regardless of the forces at work.