College basketball’s leading ‘Bracketologist’ Joe Lunardi has signed a new multiyear deal to continue with ESPN for years to come. Lunardi, a 25-year veteran at ESPN, has been a staple voice and resource for NCAA Tournament field projections, ‘bubble watch’ and more since his first post-season NCAA Tournament Guide debuted in 1995.
“I’m grateful for the way ESPN has always valued and promoted Bracketology,” Lunardi said. “To be a part of the greatest college basketball coverage anywhere is a genuine passion. I’ll continue to take the work seriously, but not myself. I’m just a fan who knows a little more about brackets than most.”
In addition to Lunardi’s contributions on ESPN.com, he provides real-time, in-season bracket analysis and updates during ESPN’s game and studio coverage from his “Bracket Bunker.” He also contributes to SportsCenter and other ESPN shows and platforms leading up to Selection Sunday. Last season, The Bracketology Show debuted on ESPN+, offering a deep-dive into the projected bracket each week.
“We are thrilled for the continued opportunity to work with Joe,” said Tony Moss, Deputy Editor for college basketball at ESPN. “The level of detail and preparation that goes into projecting the NCAA tournament bracket has been fascinating to watch from behind the scenes. Joe created the science of Bracketology and has turned it into an art form that is essential to our viewers and readership.”
Prior to joining ESPN full-time, Lunardi spent more than 30 years as head of communications and marketing for his alma mater, Saint Joseph’s University. Raised on Saint Joseph’s and Philadelphia ‘Big 5’ basketball, he wrote for a number of Philadelphia-area publications before becoming long-time editor with the Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook. The addition of a post-season NCAA Tournament Guide in the Blue Ribbon ultimately lead to the creation of Bracketology.
Lunardi continues as color analyst for Saint Joseph’s broadcasts on ESPN+.
His first book, Bracketology: March Madness, College Basketball, and the Creation of a National Obsession, will be released in March 2021.