2014 March Madne$$: The School Tuitions Of The NCAA Bracket

by Abe Sauer

Click for large version.

It is once again time for the NCAA “March Madness” basketball tournament. The eventual champions will get to bask in the national spotlight. And sure, winning a basketball title is worth bragging about — but we all know the real champion is the institution of higher education that can charge the most tuition and still have enough students to keep its rejection letter printer warm. It’s The Awl’s annual NCAA bracket by tuition, using the college information resource Peterson’s. (Where available, in-state tuition was used.) Since we first began March Madne$$ in 2009, the winning tuition has risen from $38,622 to $47,290.

Let’s take a closer look.


What a finale! If you thought American had an inferiority complex before… well, it seems there is one more thing it can’t seem to do as well as its Washington D.C. peers.

Congratulations to George Washington, with annual tuition of 47,290 George Washingtons, or about the cost of four years at either the University of Wisconsin-Madison or UCLA. Or 27 years of tuition at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, the bracketed school with the lowest annual tuition — just $1,714. Update: Peterson’s is way off for UMass; real numbers put North Carolina Central University into the win, with a tuition of $3,455.

• 2013 March Tuition Madne$$ Champ Bucknell ($45,132)
• 2012 March Tuition Madne$$ Champ Georgetown ($40,920)
• 2010 March Tuition Madne$$ Champ Richmond ($40,010)
• 2009 March Tuition Madne$$ Champ Wake Forest ($38,622)

(A final reminder about copyrights. )

Abe Sauer’s latest book is the north woods parody “Goodnight Loon.” He is also the author of the book “How to be: North Dakota — A Guide to the Plains” Email him at abesauer @ gmail.com.