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March Madness: Only 116 brackets are still perfect after Thursday's games

Only about 5% of brackets correctly picked Oakland's upset win over Kentucky on Thursday night

The dream of the perfect bracket for all but a select few is already over.

With several NCAA tournament games still set to tip on Thursday, most brackets were already busted. Only 3% of brackets filled out through Yahoo Sports were still perfect through the early wave of games on Thursday afternoon, and that figure dropped to 0.1% after No. 14 Oakland upset No. 3 Kentucky on Thursday night.

By the time Thursday's games were all done, only 116 brackets were still perfect.

The biggest drop-off of the day came after No. 11 Duquesne pulled off a huge 71-67 upset win over No. 6 BYU. The win was the first in the tournament by the Dukes since 1969. A little more than 75% of brackets had BYU advancing out of the first round, so that game single-handedly knocked out most users. Duquesne will take on No. 3 Illinois next in the second round after the Illini flew past Morehead State.

About 75% of brackets had BYU advancing out of the first round on Thursday afternoon.
About 75% of brackets had BYU advancing out of the first round on Thursday afternoon. (Michael Reaves/Getty Images) (Michael Reaves via Getty Images)

The first game knocked plenty of brackets out, too. Tom Izzo and No. 9 Michigan State rolled over No. 8 Mississippi State, 69-51, to open play on Thursday afternoon. It marked Izzo’s 20th first-round win in the tournament and set up a battle between the Spartans and top-seeded North Carolina — which flew past No. 16 Wagner in its first-round game. About 35% of brackets had the Bulldogs advancing out of the first round.

No. 11 Oregon fended off No. 6 South Carolina, 87-73, in their first-round game, which cut the remaining perfect brackets in half to about 7%. Then No. 7 Dayton rallied back from a 17-point hole in the second half to beat No. 10 Nevada, which cut the remaining field of perfect brackets to just 2.96%. Just more than 44.5% of perfect brackets at that point had Dayton beating Nevada.

The other three games of the early wave — Creighton's win over Akron, Arizona's over Long Beach State and North Carolina's over Wagner — were picked correctly by more than 90% of users.

Texas beat Colorado State 56-44 on Thursday night, which cut the remaining perfect brackets down to just 2.1%. Then it was Oakland's massive win over Kentucky that really cut into the remaining perfect brackets. Oakland stunned the Wildcats behind an all-time performance from Jack Gohlke to grab a 80-76 upset win. It marks the first time in program history that the Golden Grizzlies have reached the second round of the tournament. About 96% of users picked Kentucky to advance to the second round. That left us with just 0.1% of brackets remaining perfect.

By the end of the night, after Kansas and Washington State edged out tight wins over Samford and Drake, respectively, there were only 116 perfect brackets left.

There’s still plenty of basketball to be played through the rest of the first weekend of the NCAA tournament. But at the pace we’re already going, it’s not likely that we’ll have many perfect brackets, if any at all, by the end of the first round.