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When does March Madness 2022 start? Where is it being played?

Sixty-eight teams will fight it out to win the 2022 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, whose Final Four is to be held in New Orleans.

When does March Madness 2022 start? Where is it being played?
Rob CarrAFP

The 2022 edition of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, better known as March Madness, gets underway this month, as 68 teams battle it out to be crowned national champions of the US college game.

The single-elimination tournament begins with the First Four on 15 March, before four further rounds take place as the field is narrowed down to the participants in April’s Final Four, which this year is to be held at Caesars Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana.

How do teams qualify for March Madness?

Thirty-two teams qualify automatically for March Madness by winning their conference. So far, five colleges have been crowned conference champions to earn their ‘automatic bid’. They are:

Murray State (winners of Ohio Valley)

Longwood (Big South)

Loyola Chicago (Missouri Valley)

Georgia State (Sun Belt)

Chattanooga (Southern)

The remaining 36 qualifying teams are chosen on Selection Sunday, by a group of conference commissioners and school athletic directors appointed by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). They also choose the seeding order of the 68 teams involved.

The participants in March Madness will be split into four regions - south, west, midwest and east - for the rounds leading up to the Final Four.

March Madness: 2022 dates (venues in brackets)

13 March: Selection Sunday

15 and 16 March: First Four (Dayton, OH)

17 and 19 March: First and Second Rounds (Buffalo, NY; Indianapolis, IN; Forth Worth, TX; Portland, OR)

18 and 20 March: First and Second Rounds (Greenville, SC; Milwaukee, WI; Pittsburgh, PA; San Diego, CA)

24 and 26 March: South (San Antonio, TX) and West (San Francisco, CA) Regionals

25 and 27 March: Midwest (Chicago, IL) and East Regionals (Philadelphia, PA)

2 and 4 April: Final Four (New Orleans, LA)

Who won March Madness last year?

The Baylor Bears won March Madness 2021, beating Gonzaga Bulldogs 86-70 in the Championship Game at Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis. It was the Bears’ first ever national title.

More on March Madness

For a more in-depth look at the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament, check out Jen Bubel's March Madness for dummies guide.

Jen has also prepared this March Madness video explainer:


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