Introducing FanDuel's New Bracket Pick'em Game

FanDuel has created a new way to experience the NCAA Tournament for 2018. Here's what you need to know about Bracket Pick'em.

You know you're filling out brackets this March. Multiple brackets. It's bound to happen. So embrace it.

As fun as filling out a bracket can be, writing in or clicking on the same few names over and over can get repetitive. Unique twists on the bracket are always fun.

FanDuel is offering its own flavor this year, in the form of Bracket Pick'em, a mix between -- you guessed it -- a pick'em contest and a full-on bracket pool.

Here's what you need to know about the new contest.

How to Play

You're still picking teams to advance, but rather than selecting a winner for all 65 games, you're simply choosing five teams to advance as far as possible.

You can pick any five teams you'd like, but your five teams must have a combined seed tally of at least 20.

Four 4-seeds and a 5-seed will work. A 12-seed, and four 2-seeds? That's good. Four 1-seeds and a 16? That'll do it. A 1, 3, 4, 5, and a 7 does the trick, too. Whatever combination you want, you can do so long as the total seeds rack up to 20 or more.

Then, as you could've guessed, you get rewarded when your team wins, but the twist is that your score depends on your team's seed. The seed acts as a multiplier, so taking a chance on a higher seed can pay off in a big way if they climb through the bracket.

Win in Round Reward
Round of 64 10 Points x Team Seed
Round of 32 25 Points x Team Seed
Sweet 16 50 Points x Team Seed
Elite Eight 100 Points x Team Seed
Final Four 250 Points x Team Seed
Championship 500 Points x Team Seed

We'll use the 2017 NCAA Tournament's Final Four for some examples (each team's seed is in parentheses).

2017 Final Four North Carolina (1) Gonzaga (1) Oregon (3) South Carolina (7)
Round of 64 Win 10 10 30 70
Round of 32 Win 25 25 75 175
Sweet 16 Win 50 50 150 350
Elite Eight Win 100 100 300 700
Final Four Win 250 250 - -
Finals Win 500 - - -
Total Score 935 435 555 1295

So a nice, steady stream of points flowed from North Carolina, en route to a championship win. They lacked a big multiplier, but the 500-point championship bonus was huge for their point total.

Gonzaga racked up five wins, but as a 1-seed and without the championship bonus, they offered up the fewest points among the last four teams, despite the extra win and championship game appearance.

Oregon outperformed Gonzaga even with a Final Four loss, as did South Carolina, who fell to Gonzaga in the Final Four. The seed multiplier made South Carolina the highest scoring team in the entire tournament.

In fact, Xavier, an 11-seed, earned as many points (935) as North Carolina did, thanks to a Round of 64 win (110), a Round of 32 win (275), and a Sweet 16 win (550). Both schools tied for the second-highest output among tournament teams in 2017. Oregon was fourth.

The Goal

As we can see with South Carolina and Xavier, you don't need to pick the winner to put up a big score if you select the correct higher seeds (though the past 10 optimal combinations all had the champion).

All you need to do to win a prize is to net at least 400 points. If you hit at least 2,500 points, you'll win a share of $20,000. The top score will earn (or split) a $5,000 prize.

The best part of all? It's free to enter, so head on over to FanDuel and select your squad.