March. It’s the most wonderful time of the year. And better yet, DraftKings is offering a free bracket challenge beginning on Monday, March 18. This is the first time DraftKings Sportsbook has offered March Madness betting but the contest is FREE TO ENTER and boasts total prizes of $64,000.

Bracket contest

This contest runs from Monday, March 18 through Wednesday, March 21 before the first run of day-long NCAA tournament games. You can “reserve your seat” up until Selection Sunday, but you obviously won’t be able to make your picks until after the brackets are unveiled. You can sign up here.

There are unlimited entries (but only one per person). The top 6,475 places are paid.

draftkings bracket reserved



DraftKings is offering up $64,000 in prizes in the following order:

  • 1st: $5,000
  • 2nd: $4,000
  • 3rd: $2,500
  • 4th: $2,000
  • 5th: $1,500
  • 6th-7th: $1,000
  • 8th-10th: $750
  • 11th-15th: $500
  • 16th-25th: $250
  • 26th-35th: $150
  • 36th-50th: $125
  • 51st and so on: $100 or under


You don’t have to be in New Jersey to be eligible

While DraftKings’ Bracket Challenge is being run in the DraftKings Sportsbook app, it is open to users everywhere, as it’s not actually considered betting because it’s a free contest.

This is a way for DraftKings to generate signups and grow their customer base in areas where sports betting will soon be legal.


How to play

If you have a DraftKings Sportsbook account, just log in and click on the brackets tab. If you are new to DraftKings, you can click “claim offer” and get access to DraftKings’ bonus and the bracket challenge.



Private bracket

DraftKings is also offering users the ability to run their own free bracket in the sportsbook app.

From the press release:

To provide customers with the most complete tournament experience available, Brackets on DraftKings Sportsbook will be joined by both traditional sports betting as well as daily fantasy offerings. DraftKings customers can also use the Sportsbook app to set up private pools for their free brackets to play with friends across the country.

This will allow you to invite friends and family to play in a private pool. Users who create a private bracket and invite new DraftKings Sportsbook users will receive a $20 free bet.


March Madness promos

If you are eligible for New Jersey sports betting, DraftKings is offering a number of March Madness-specific promos and bonuses for new users:

  • $20 in free bets with no deposit
    • available through Sunday, this offer will give new users 4 $5 free bets with no deposit
  • FREE bracket challenge
    • free for all to enter
  • paid bracket challenge
    • in addition to the free challenge, DraftKings is running paid bracket contests for users in New Jersey
  • free bet up to $500
    • new users can get their first bet matched up to $500 by clicking this link

March is a big activation period for DraftKings and its competitors since it’s the first year legal online sports betting is live during the NCAA Tournament. Brackets are a very familiar to casual sports fans and the DraftKings Bracket Challenge is a certain way to bring in new users.




Full disclosure: We are an affiliate of legal New Jersey sports betting sites, so we may receive a commission if you use our links.