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Massive March Madness Mania: How Sling TV is Changing the Game for NCAA Basketball Fans [2024]

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Attention basketball fans! The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament (aka March Madness) is just around the corner. But don’t worry, you don’t have to break the bank to catch every buzzer-beater, upset, and Cinderella story.

With Sling TV and Paramount+, you can stream every game of the NCAA Men’s College Basketball National Championship Tournament and get access to all the coverage and analysis – without the high price tag of traditional cable TV. If you love and want to watch college basketball but aren’t as big a fan of spending tons of money on TV, read on!

In a hurry? Sling Blue ($40.00/mo), paired with Paramount+ with SHOWTIME ($11.99/mo), is the cheapest way to get yourself a full NCAA tournament slate. Save 50% on Sling TV now!

Save 50% on Sling TV Now

We totally get it – you’ve got your bracket all filled in, and you’re ready to cheer on your favorite team. Or maybe you’re like us and a sucker for an underdog story.

Whatever the case, we’re guessing you’re not rooting for your cable bill. So we’re here to tell you that you can watch every single NCAA Championship game in March for under $35. Sound too good to be true? It’s not.

How To Watch March Madness on Sling TV and Paramount+

The television rights for March Madness games are held jointly by CBS Sports (owned by Paramount Global) and Turner Broadcasting (Warner Bros. Discovery’s baby). The games are spread across CBS and the Turner channels TBS, TNT, and truTV.

Save 50% on Sling TV Now

Texas A&M Corpus Christie Islanders v Texas Southern University Tigers, March Madness 2022
Islanders vs Tigers, March Madness 2022 by Blervis under CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

The Turner Networks on Sling TV

Sling Blue, one of Sling’s two base packages, has TBS, TNT, and truTV all for just $40.00/mo – no add-ons needed. You also get more than 35 other channels, including (depending on where you live) NBC, Fox, and/or ABC. You’ll also be able to stream on up to three devices at a time.

Sling Orange (also $40.00/mo) has ESPN (as well as ESPN2 and ESPN3), TBS, and TNT in its base package, but you’ll have to spring for the Entertainment Extra add-on ($6/mo) to get truTV for the First Four round of March Madness. If you only want to stream NCAA regular season games though, you’ll want ESPN. Sling Orange only allows viewing on one streaming device at a time.

You can also combine the two plans, Sling Orange + Blue, for $55.00/mo. This gives you every channel offered in both plans.

Save 50% on Sling TV Now

CBS on Paramount+

The Paramount+ with SHOWTIME plan (deal) covers the CBS Sports side of things for $11.99/mo (or $119.99/year – just $10/mo). This premium package provides several benefits over Paramount+’s cheaper Essential plan, but the included CBS live stream is the one that matters most for March Madness. This means you also get all of CBS’s considerable sports content too.

Other benefits to the Paramount+ with SHOWTIME plan are ad-free on-demand streaming, access to SHOWTIME content, and the ability to download content onto mobile devices.

And Paramount+ is much more than just sports. It has a huge library of on-demand Paramount Global shows (that’s everything from CBS, MTV, Nickelodeon, BET, Paramount Network, Smithsonian, and their related channels) plus all of Paramount’s movies. They have a ton of originals exclusive to the platform as well.

CBS with an HD Antenna

If signing up to yet another TV service sets your teeth on edge, you could always go the antenna route. This option works particularly well with Sling TV, as it actually integrates antenna signals into its interface, meaning you can get your local channels together with your Sling channels. In fact, Sling encourages antennas so much they’ll give you one for free if you prepay your plan for two months.

An antenna offers not just CBS, but also ABC, NBC, Fox, and, depending where you live, the CW, Univision, PBS, Telemundo, and more. All completely free!

Save 50% on Sling TV Now

Why Choose Sling for March Madness?

FuboTV is usually our recommended streaming service for live sports. But there are exceptions, and this is a big one because – while FuboTV has CBS – it doesn’t carry the Turner channels. And these are essential for March Madness.

Hulu + Live TV, YouTube TV, and DIRECTV STREAM do carry all four channels required – but they start at $72.99/mo.

So what’s Sling TV got going for it?

  • The biggest advantage is Sling TV’s price. The TV streaming competitors above are three to four times more expensive than your first month of Sling TV. Over time, that saving really adds up.
  • It offers the broadest device support of any streaming service.
  • Sling TV is the most customizable service, with dozens of add-on channels and options available.
  • Both plans include thousands of hours of on-demand entertainment.
  • It includes 50 hours of cloud DVR storage, which you can upgrade to 200 hours for a small fee.

Even with the extra expense of Paramount+, a Sling TV subscription is still far cheaper than the alternatives. If you don’t want to fuss with an antenna, Sling TV + Paramount+ with SHOWTIME is the cheapest way to watch March Madness, from the First Four to the Final Four and the Championship.

Read our full Sling TV for full details, including available channels and compatible devices.

Save 50% on Sling TV Now

Texas Tech's Keenan Evans reacts during the 2016 NCAA Basketball Tournament in Raleigh, North Carolina
Texas Tech’s Keenan Evans / taken by SneakinDeacon under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Wrapping Up

March Madness’ popularity rivals (and even sometimes exceeds) that of the NBA. And Sling TV paired with Paramount+ with SHOWTIME is the cheapest way to watch every game. So get your brackets ready, grab some friends, and get ready to experience live TV – and March Madness – in a whole new way!

Not enough Madness for you? Check out the Women’s National Championship on April 7!

Save 50% on Sling TV Now


What are the progressive rounds of the tournament nicknamed?

Hardcore fans of the Big Dance know all the lingo, but for newcomers or more casual devotees of bracketology, here’s a breakdown:

  • The First Four
  • The First Round (Round of 64)
  • The Second Round (Round of 32)
  • The Sweet Sixteen (Regional Semi-Finals)
  • The Elite Eight (Regional Finals)
  • The Final Four (National Semi-Finals)
  • The National Championship

Who are the Power Five conferences?

The Power Five conferences – the five most visible, most lucrative athletic conferences in the NCAA – typically provide the majority of the schools represented in the championship tournament, especially toward the end at the higher levels. They are:

  • Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC)
  • Big Ten Conference
  • Big 12 Conference
  • Pac-12 Conference
  • Southeastern Conference (SEC)

What do the NCAA basketball rankings look like going into the tournament?

The rankings are dominated, as usual, by the Power Five (see above) and the usual suspects. The men’s tournaments and seeds will be revealed on Selection Sunday, on March 17th.

As of the beginning of March, here are the top ten teams with their respective records:

  1. Houston Cougars (27-3)
  2. Connecticut Huskies (UConn) (27-3)
  3. Purdue Boilermakers (27-3)
  4. Tennessee Volunteers (24-6)
  5. Arizona Wildcats (24-6)
  6. Iowa State Cyclones (24-6)
  7. North Carolina Tar Heels (24-6)
  8. Marquette Golden Eagles (22-8)
  9. Duke Blue Devils (24-6)
  10. Creighton Bluejays (22-8)

Which teams made it to the Sweet 16 last year?

The 16 teams to make it to the regional semifinals, also known as the Sweet Sixteen, were as follows:

The Final Four were San Diego State, Florida Atlantic, UConn, and Miami, with the UConn Huskies ultimately taking the trophy.

What are some other NCAA Championships I can watch on Sling TV?

Lots! And we have guides for many of them!

Page Updates

  1. Updated some of the sections.

Alanna Baker
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