March Madness and NCAA Brackets May Cost Businesses Over $134 Million, Experts Say

Photo credit: NCAA

“Are you workin’ hard or hardly workin’?”

So goes the adage. And according to a new study, when March Madness rolls around, its probably the question your boss should be asking you.

If there is one thing we get off on in the USofA, it’s competition. Especially when it’s low risk and high reward. It may very well be our greatest strength — or greatest weakness — as a society. The NCAA Tournament bracket pools are perhaps the best example of this.


According to global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, American employees will spend some one to three hours on average watching basketball instead of working on Thursday and Friday. This will equate to approximately $134 million in wasted wages.

Off the top of my head, I know multiple dudes (at least a dozen) who take vacation and/or sick days for the first two days of the tournament — and I sure as heck know I won’t be doing much. (Other than contributing to Manolith, of course.)

Considering the nature of this year’s tournament, with there being no clear-cut favorite, casual fans may have more of a vested interest in what could happen. Personally, working through my bracket, I didn’t have a clue who should advance to the Final Four — and I’m a college basketball nut! There are just too many plausible possibilities. (Would that be a definitive probability?)

If you don’t have a workable bracket, here’s a link to one you can print. There are several free contests you can find at ESPN and CBS Sports and of course, the best way to roll is in the office or social pool.

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