March Hoops Action on ESPN Digital Media Platforms
Tournament Challenge Bracket Games Return on ESPN.com; Championship Week on ESPN360.com – 174 Live Online College Hoops Games, Beginning March 4
Tournament time is back and ESPN kicks off the month of March with its fan favorites on digital media platforms. Sign-ups on ESPN.com for the ESPN Men’s Tournament Challenge presented by State Farm and Sprint and the ESPN Women’s Tournament Challenge presented by Capital One will be open for entries this week. The start of Championship Week 2010 on ESPN360.com also tips off on Thursday, March 4th with live streaming of 174 college basketball games over eleven days.
New features to fantasy games on ESPN.com this year include the first ESPN Men’s Tournament Challenge app for iPhone and iPod Touch devices, pick ‘em games for Championship Week and the NCAA Men’s Tournament and the return of the player-based game Hardcourt Challenge.
ESPN Tournament Challenge
Both the Men’s and Women’s Tournament Challenge games return and will once again be free for entrants to complete and submit up to ten entries. Fans complete and submit a bracket of forecasted tournament game outcomes and points are awarded for each correct pick, with point values increasing as the Tournaments progress.
Last year, the Men’s Tournament Challenge game was again the most popular bracket game in the nation, with more than a 4.6 million brackets, up 43 percent since the previous year — setting a new record. Among the millions of participants in 2009 was President Barack Obama, who correctly picked the North Carolina Tar Heels to win the title, but finished with his bracket ranked at 903,125 overall, just above the 80th percentile.
In addition, this year fans will be able to play via the ESPN Men’s Tournament Challenge app on their iPhone or iPod Touch devices. The app, which will launch around Selection Sunday and available at no cost to fans in the App Store, will allow fans to sign up, join groups, check their brackets and follow all the action in real-time on the go. Fans will also have the ease and convenience of submitting and following via their mobile phone on ESPN MVP on Verizon Wireless or via ESPN’s industry-leading mobile website. ESPN’s complete coverage from writers, analysts and on-air talent will keep fans up to date on the latest news and highlights.
At the end of the Tournament, the Men’s Tournament Challenge entrant with the most points wins $10,000. The runner up will be named in a random drawing for a $5,000 Best Buy gift card. The Women’s Tournament Challenge winner will receive 3,000 ESPN Winner’s Circle points, which are redeemable for prizes on the ESPN Winner’s Circle website. Entries for the Men’s Tournament Challenge game will be accepted until just prior to the tip-off of the Tournament’s first game on Thursday, March 18th. The Women’s Tournament Challenge will accept registration until just prior to tip-off of the first game on Saturday, March 20th.
ESPN Insider members will have the added advantage of utilizing a slate of predictor and analyzer tools to help fill out their brackets. They include:
- Bracket Predictor – Tournament Edition: A data-driven information tool with predictions for each match-up. It provides stats via Team Power Ratings, similar games and seed vs. seed comparisons, historical analysis and more.
- Game by Game Predictor: A match-up information tool conveniently available on the bracket module within Tournament Challenge.
- Bracket Analyzer: ESPN Insider members will have the option to have their brackets analyzed after submitting. The tool will take a look at a user’s picks and run an analysis of problems in their brackets.
Other features available to ESPN Insider members include Giant Killers — an exclusive formula for choosing “Cinderella” teams — exclusive content from ESPN Bracketologist Joe Lunardi and more.
ESPN Hardcourt Challenge and College Hoops Pick ‘Em
ESPN.com is also bringing back its original player-based game in ESPN Hardcourt Challenge. Fans pick a roster of actual players as they follow the tournament games, competing for points based on their roster’s performance in statistical categories. The grand prize winner will receive 3,000 ESPN Winner’s Circle points.
ESPN College Hoops Pick ‘Em presented by Sears will also be available for sign-ups beginning this week. The game challenges fans to predict the winner of each tournament game as it progresses. The entrant with the most points wins a $25,000 Sears gift card, with a runner-up prize awarded in a random drawing for a $5,000 Sears gift card.
Championship Week 2010
For college hoops fans anxious to get in the game before the Tournaments tip off, there’s ESPN Championship Week Pick ‘Em presented by Muscle Milk. Players will be able to select the outcome of up to 76 match-ups across conference games in play during seven days of Championship Week. A $3,000 cash prize will be awarded to the winner with the most points at the end of the week and a $2,000 cash prize to the winner with the most points in a single day on Thursday, March 11th — the busiest day of the week with 23 total games.
Championship Week 2010 kicks off March 4th, and ESPN360.com will be covering 27 conference championships on its 24/7 live broadband sports television network, including the Big East, Big Ten, ACC, Big 12 and SEC. A total of 174 conference tournament games, including simulcasts of every ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU men’s and women’s game and numerous out-of-market games from top conference tournaments. Additionally, ESPN360.com will provide live coverage of every NCAA Women’s Tournament game, and select post-season National Invitational Tournament (NIT) games online.
A complete Championship Week 2010 schedule of coverage across ESPN platforms is available the ESPN MediaZone website.
ESPN360.com — soon to be ESPN3.com in April — is ESPN’s live sports broadband network, giving fans a 24/7 online destination that delivers more than 3,500 live, global sports events annually. It is available at no additional cost to fans who receive their high-speed Internet connection from an affiliated service provider. ESPN360.com is currently available in more than 50 million homes – two-thirds of U.S. broadband homes. It is available via dozens of Internet Service Providers of all sizes nationwide, including Comcast, AT&T, Verizon, Cox, Charter, Windstream, RCN, Insight, Frontier, Cavalier, Mediacom, Conway, Grande Communications and many more. It is also available at no cost to approximately 21 million U.S. college students and U.S.-based military personnel via computers connected to on-campus educational networks and on-base military networks.
About ESPN Insider
Among the most successful premium content services online, ESPN Insider — in partnership with ESPN The Magazine — delivers the best in predictive analytical content including predictive tools and analysis, exclusive professional level scouting information and the best in draft coverage, Buster Olney’s award-winning blog, the latest buzz on athletes and teams in Rumor Central, membership benefits and more. In addition, Insider features exclusive video, Insider-only chats with athletes and celebrities, special access to ESPN Radio and first-look offerings from ESPN. ESPN Insider members also receive each issue of ESPN The Magazine delivered directly to them.