Gentlemen, it’s already that time of the year again! March is rapidly approaching and with it comes an entire month of high-octane college basketball. Bracketologists are already scheming with their potential upsets because, as sporting events go, the tourney truly captivates us all with the drama. Not only do we dedicate an entire month to college basketball, we also invest a lot of personal time (which really means money). With Selection Sunday coming up, it’s important to know how much we truly spend on college basketball.
With previous years and their trends factored in, it’s expected that over 9 billion dollars will be spent this year on March Madness bets. This whopping figure also accounts for both legal and illegal betting, which sounds more hardcore than it really is. Yes, there is a lot of underground activity, but workplace betting in pools is still considered illegal and is the reason for such an inflated number. However, no one cares about workplace betting.
These large numbers in betting are so huge, it dwarfs the annual GDP of many countries, including Haiti and the Bahamas. More money is being spent betting on college basketball than certain countries make in an entire year. But don’t let that figure distract you. Even with all this money being pumped into betting, no one has ever had a perfect bracket. However, after both the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Indians blew 3-1 leads in their respective series and the Atlanta Falcons blew a 25-point lead in the Super Bowl, it’s safe to say anything can happen in sports. After this whacky year, maybe this is the tournament that a 16-seed beats a 1-seed.