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Get your brackets ready. March Madness is about to begin

Loyola of Chicago's Aher Uguak (30) heads to the basket during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Drake in the championship of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament on March 6.
Jeff Roberson
/
AP
Loyola of Chicago's Aher Uguak (30) heads to the basket during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Drake in the championship of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament on March 6.

College basketball's regular season is coming to a close and by the end of Sunday, we'll know which teams are going to be competing in both the men's and women's NCAA Division I tournaments. Final selections for the men's tournament will happen at 6 p.m. ET with the women's selections following at 8 p.m. Each tournament will feature 68 teams.

March Madness then officially begins on Tuesday with the First Four round in the men's tournament. The play-in round will determine the four lowest-seeded teams in the tournament.

The pandemic is ongoing, but the tournaments are back to a more normal schedule with different rounds taking place in cities across the country instead of the entire tournament in one place.

The NCAA released COVID-19 guidelines this month outlining testing and vaccination policies.

If you're looking to get in on the fun this month, here's a schedule of the tournaments, a look at building your own brackets and more as the road to the Final Four begins.

The men's tournament

  • Play for the men's tournament begins on Tuesday, with the first games of the First Four round happening in Dayton, Ohio. Those four games will wrap up on Wednesday.  
  • First round of games will be played March 17-18
  • Second round of games will be played March 19-20
  • Sweet 16 takes place on March 24-25
  • Elite Eight follows on March 26-27
  • Final Four teams play April 2
  • The 2022 champion will be decided on April 4 in New Orleans
  • The women's tournament

  • Play for the First Four in the women's tournament begins on Wednesday and wraps up on Thursday.
  • First round of games will be played March 18-19
  • Second round of games will be played March 20-21
  • Regionals will be played March 25-28
  • Final Four teams play April 1
  • The 2022 champion will be decided on April 3 in Minneapolis
  • Brackets, brackets, brackets

    Building your personal bracket and predicting which team is going to take it all is one of the best parts of March Madness. Whether you're going in alone, putting together a group with your family and friends for bragging rights or even setting up a pool with some of your work buddies, you've got options on how to go about it.

    For the men's tournament:

  • CBS Sports Bracket Games
  • ESPN Men's Tournament Challenge
  • Yahoo! Tourney Pick'em 
  • For the women's tournament:

  • CBS Sports Bracket Games
  • ESPN Women's Tournament Challenge
  • Not sure where to start when building your bracket? The NCAA has some tips for making your picks.

    Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.