Warren Buffett Will Give You $1 Billion If You Make A Perfect March Madness Bracket

Your odds of winning: 1 in 9.2 quintillion.

Just how impressive is a perfectly completed March Madness bracket? According to Warren Buffett and Quicken Loans, a billion big ones.

Berkshire Hathaway and Quicken Loans have teamed up to offer a $1 billion prize paid in 40 annual installments of $25 million, or a $500 million lump sum. If there is more than one winner, the amount is shared among the recipients.

"Millions of people play brackets every March, so why not take a shot at becoming $1 billion richer for doing so," said Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, in a statement.

Quicken Loans will also offer 20 runners-up with the most accurate brackets $100,000 to use toward buying, refinancing, or remodeling a home. Registration for the competition is open March 3 to 19.

Your odds of a perfect bracket? 1 in 9.2 quintillion--that's 18 figures behind the nine. You're more likely to hit four holes-in-one in a single round of golf.

(As some readers have pointed out, your chances are greatly improved if you know a little bit about March Madness--for example, that a No. 16 seed is unlikely to beat a No. 1 seed. "The 1-in-9.2-quintillion estimate is based on the assumption that each guess of a particular game outcome is like an independent toss of a coin. Of course, if you tweak the assumptions, you get different answers," says Cornell University math professor John Pike. Jay Bergen, a math professor at DePaul University, says the odds are more like 1 in 128 billion for those who know a bit about the tournament.)

[Image: Flickr user acidpix]

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29 Comments

  • Joe Kardon

    This coming from a man who is against casino gambling in Nebraska and thinks people like me should be paying more taxes. With all due respect Mr. Buffett I wonder what UNMC could do with $1 billion for cancer research or other uses to make people's lives better. Why give it to some jerk who fills out a basketball bracket?

  • Nolan Read

    You do realize that picking a perfect bracket is virtually impossible, right? It's just a publicity stunt.

  • Justin Green

    The best PR required no actual commitment of time, energy or money yet makes headlines and gets people talking - that's exactly what this is. Whomever thought of this idea deserves to be recognized for their excellent PR work. But the fact that I clicked on and read this makes me feel like a sucker for wasting 3 minutes of my time.

  • Brian Mcnamee

    those odds figure every game at odds of 50/50 so you take a calculator and go 1x2 x2 x2 63 times to get those odds. The real odds are much lower say the 1st round of syracuse vs the 64th seed those odds are really more like 99.99 to .01 so this one game has reduced the real odds by half. If the first two rounds there are many such lopsided match ups that would bring real odds down to the billions if not hundreds of millions to one. The thing that busts brackets is when a 15 seed beats a two as that will knock out almost the entire field. A few years ago there was a perfect bracket when all the 1 and 2 seeds made the sweet 16. This is not as impossible as they say and I hope there are several winners. There will be if they allow multiple entries as say 400 entries you could go both ways on quite a number of difficult choices and that 1 billion is a big enough prize to try it.

  • Savage Nation

    9,200,000,000,000,000,000 to 1 Odds?

    How generous of the 0.01%er Obamabot Warren Buffet

    Build the Keystone Pipeline and stop allowing old geezers to corner the market with their railroads!

  • Steve Grant

    Is this the leftist fave Buffet, who is getting rich bringing tar sand oil in from Canada on his rail tankers......which helps keep prices higher....while applying pressure to to the WH regime to keep the Keystone pipeline from being built?

  • He gives his money to foundations his children run as a way to get around the inheritance tax. You liberals will believe anything a rich selfish prick tells you as long as your emotions are involved. You should drink more kool-Aid and die loser.