If you’re wondering about the prospect of a March Madness bracket that is perfect through the entire run of the NCAA tournament, consider this: It’s hard enough to get past the first two days without a bust. But it's not impossible.
The relative predictability of the 2017 tournament led to an abnormally high number of perfect brackets surviving the first round. We tracked 236 of them, at six major online games, including the Capital One March Madness Bracket Challenge here at NCAA.com. As "high" as that number is, it's still among tens of millions of entries and in the vicinity of 1 in every 100,000 or more.
Tracking six major games at NCAA.com, Bleacher Report, CBS, ESPN, Fox Sports and Yahoo!, one bracket remained perfect through 39 games before busting in the final matchup Saturday night, when Purdue beat Iowa State. Here's a closer look at that winning bracket. That's the longest known recorded and verified streak (that we could find) to open a tournament.
Before this year, the longest perfect bracket streak we tracked was 36, according to Yahoo! Sports. In 2014, Brad Binder went 36-for-36 to start the tournament.