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Manage March Madness using teams’ Facebook page likes

401384_10151545761562457_1835943645_nIf you’re a fan of collegiate basketball, then you are aware that the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship tournament is scheduled to start tomorrow – which basically gives you today to try and manage your March Madness picks. If you’re not a fan but would like to keep up with your friends who are, you have nothing to worry about – Michael Bailey, an economist on the Facebook Data Science team, organized a pretty detailed breakdown of U.S. fans’ bracket preferences in a note on the Sports on Facebook page that could potentially guide you in your quest for an unbeatable March Madness roster.

Every one of the sixty-eight teams that made it to the national championship this year has received at least one million likes on their official Facebook pages exclusively from U.S. users, according to Bailey. Inspired by Sean Taylor’s post on the NFL Fans on Facebook page and D3 code, he was able to determine fan density per state location and create color-coded maps, making it possible to find out the most liked basketball conference per region.

 march-madness-accBailey’s findings reveal that the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) dominates the East, South, and inner West regions and has the biggest fan base of all conferences, generally due to UNC topping the charts as the team that has most Facebook page likes.  Want to know what other teams are most favored across the country?  In his post, Bailey broke down his research according to playoff region to better cater to fans hoping to fine-tune their list and determine which teams will benefit from home court advantage.

march-madness-seedsGonzaga (West), Indiana (East), Louisville (Midwest) and Kansas (East) dominate their turfs as the top seed teams, and it seems like Kansas takes the cake for most land covered in terms of fan base.  However, Indiana’s reach is far greater, having loyalists from the East, South, and Midwest regions.

If you’re seriously considering participating (and crushing the competition) in a March Madness office pool or are interested in keeping tabs on the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship tourney this year, you can use this Facebook study along with some mobile apps we deemed worthy to get you in the game.