NCAA® March Madness® Basketball Tournament live on ESPN America and ESPN Player

BasketballDigital and Mobile PlatformsPress ReleasesTV Programming

NCAA® March Madness® Basketball Tournament live on ESPN America and ESPN Player

  • Extensive coverage of NCAA Tournament on television
  • ESPN Player the exclusive online home of live and on-demand tournament action

For images of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament  and ESPN’s NCAA basketball coverage, click HERE

Enter your bracket in the Tournament Challenge bracket game HERE

ESPN America and will bring UK viewers live and exclusive coverage of the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament as the top 68 college teams in the US compete for the National Championship. The action begins at 10.30pm on Wednesday 20th March with the First Four play-in games and runs through five knock-out rounds to the National Championship game on Monday 8th April.

The build up to March Madness® begins with Championship Week, starting at 4.00pm on Wednesday 13th March, as teams compete to win their conference championships and secure an automatic place in the tournament. ESPN America will broadcast games from some of the NCAA’s strongest conferences, including the Big East, ACC, Big 12 and Pac-12, with live and on-demand coverage also available via broadband streaming service Online, will be the exclusive home of this year’s tournament, after ESPN secured exclusive international multimedia rights to show the championship outside North America in 2011.

Following Championship Week is ESPN America’s live broadcast of Selection Sunday at 11.00pm on 17th March. The show will reveal the teams that have been chosen “at large” – based on a range of factors from their regular-season performances – who will join the conference-winning automatic qualifiers to make up the 68 teams in the NCAA Tournament.

ESPN’s coverage of this year’s Final Four will feature one of the most famous voices in college basketball – legendary analyst and commentator Dick Vitale, who has been an NCAA College Basketball analyst on ESPN since 1979, will commentate on the Final Four for the first time in his career. “Dickie V” will cover one semi-final and the championship game, joined by ESPN’s Brad Nessler. Throughout the tournament, shows such as NCAA Tip-Off and College GameDay on ESPN America will update fans on the latest news and highlights from all the games as March Madness grips the basketball world.

Once the teams are confirmed, basketball fans across the US and the world will begin predicting how the tournament will unfold by filling out their brackets. The process is notoriously difficult, with astronomical odds of correctly predicting the outcomes of 63 games. The challenge is hugely popular, with millions of fans – including President Obama for the past four years – logging their guesses online into ESPN’s Tournament Challenge game (more than six million entries in 2012). This year, fans in the UK can enter via and their predictions will automatically be entered into a specially created ESPN America group, which will have prizes on offer each week for the most accurate brackets.

NCAA Tournament live on ESPN America and

This year’s NCAA Tournament follows on from a thrilling regular season which has seen teams such as Indiana, Miami (FL), Gonzaga, Florida and Michigan State impress. March Madness will give fans the chance to see potential stars of the NBA in action, with players like Ben McLemore, Marcus Smart and Cody Zeller all tipped to to have bright futures in the professional game.

ESPN America and ESPN Player’s extensive coverage of the NCAA Tournament tips off at 10.30pm on Wednesday 20th March with the first of four “play-in” games as eight teams compete for four spaces to make up the final 64. The action gets into full swing at 3.00pm on Thursday 21st March as ESPN America broadcasts at least 12 straight hours of live basketball on four consecutive days, with flexible game coverage from each of the four tournament regions – East, West, Midwest and South. In addition, fans using online service ESPN Player will be able to watch any single game they choose, both live and on-demand.

The four days between Thursday 21st and Sunday 24th March will see the Second and Third Rounds narrow 64 teams down to the Sweet Sixteen regional semifinals, which begin at 10:00pm on Thursday 28th March. The winning teams make it into the Elite Eight, starting at 8.15pm on Saturday 30th March, with every game from this point fully live on ESPN America as well as ESPN Player. The national semi-finals, also known as the Final Four, will be live from the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, beginning on Saturday 6th April with each team just one win away from the National Championship game.

Last year’s showpiece event, which saw Kentucky beat Kansas to win their eighth title, was the most watched basketball game of 2012 in the US, drawing more viewers than any single game of the NBA Finals. The 2013 final will take place live on ESPN America on Monday 8th April.


Date                                         Programme                                           Start Time

Sunday 17th March                     Bracketology Special                            11:00pm GMT / 12:00am CET

Wednesday 20th March               First Round – First Four                        10:30pm GMT / 11:30pm CET

Thursday 21st March                   Second Round – multi-game coverage   4:00pm GMT / 5:00pm CET

Friday 22nd March                      Second Round – multi-game coverage   4:00pm GMT / 5:00pm CET

Saturday 23rd March                   Third Round – multi-game coverage       4:00pm GMT / 5:00pm CET

Sunday 24th March                     Third Round – multi-game coverage       4:00pm GMT / 5:00pm CET

Thursday 28th March                   Regional Semi-Finals (Sweet Sixteen)     11:00pm GMT / 12:00am CET

Friday 29th March                       Regional Semi-Finals (Sweet Sixteen)     11:00pm GMT / 12:00am CET

Saturday 30th March                   Regional Finals (Elite Eight)                   8:20 pm GMT / 9:20pm CET

Sunday 31st March                     Regional Finals (Elite Eight)                   7:00pm BST / 8:00pm CEST*

Saturday 6th April                       NCAA Final Four                                   11:00pm BST / 12:00am CEST

Monday 8th April                        NCAA Championship Game                   2:00am BST / 3:00am CEST


* Note: spring clock change occurs

** see listings at


About ESPN Player

ESPN Player, ESPN’s broadband platform in Europe, provides sports fans with live and on-demand sports action from the U.S. and Europe online.  It joins ESPN’s growing digital portfolio in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, which includes the online and mobile websites, ESPNFC,, and the UK-focused sports portal

ESPN Player features more than 1500 live events and thousands of hours of live an on-demand sport, including but not limited to:

  • US College Football:  Hundreds of games from the university gridiron of the US, including regular season, Bowl Games and Bowl Championship Series;
  • US College Basketball:  Hundreds of games from the hard courts of the USA’s top universities, including the regular season, Championship Week and, for the first time, March Madness
  • US College Lacrosse, Baseball, Softball, Ice Hockey, Soccer, Volleyball and more
  • X Games
  • American Le Mans

ESPN Player puts the user in full control of their broadband sports viewing experience. Fans have the ability to pause and rewind on-demand events, giving the viewer the ability to scroll to any part of the game they may have missed, review a great play or goal with the 60-second rewind button, or return the start of the game with a single click. Subscriptions to ESPN Player are available for Daily, Monthly and Annual Passes.

ESPN Player features high quality streaming video, with games streamed at up to 2.2mbps.  Player also utilises adaptive streaming technology that dynamically adjusts to maximize video quality depending upon a user’s connection speed and various other factors.  

Costs for ESPN Player College Pass subscription:

  • £8.99 for a one-day pass
  • £17.99 for a monthly pass
  • £99.99 for an annual pass
Back to top button