How to watch March Madness 2024: Live stream the men's NCAA basketball tournament

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March Madness.
March Madness.Photo by Getty Images

March Madness is here, so hopefully, your brackets are set. The NCAA men's tournament will run from now until April 8. As is often the case when it comes to watching college basketball, the viewing situation gets a bit complicated. Fortunately, we've put together a guide on everything you need to know about how to watch March Madness 2024.

UConn, Houston, Purdue, and North Carolina secured top seeds at Sunday night's selection. North Carolina beat Wagner on Thursday, and the other three teams will compete during Friday's First Round games. While there are many options for tuning in live, which we've laid out below, the cheapest way to see all games without cable is to buy subscriptions to Paramount+ with Showtime and Max.

Not sure where to start? Keep reading to learn all of your options for live streaming, as well as a full list of today's games.

March Madness quick links

  • USA: Paramount+, Max, Sling TV, Hulu + Live TV

  • Access live TV subscriptions from anywhere via ExpressVPN

  • Notable games:

    • UConn vs. Stetson, Friday at 2:45 p.m. ET on CBS

    • Purdue vs. Grambling, Friday at 7:25 p.m. ET on TBS

    • Houston vs. Longwood, Friday at 9:20 p.m. ET on TNT

Where to watch March Madness in the US

March Madness games will air across four networks: CBS, TNT, TBS, and truTV. The First Four (airing on Tuesday and Wednesday) played on truTV, but different games now air on the four different networks daily. For cord-cutters seeking to live stream the games, there are three main streaming configurations to try out.

The first configuration is the cheapest combination for you today. You'll need the Paramount+ with Showtime tier for CBS, which comes with a one-week free trial. Access to TNT, TBS, and truTV comes through Max. In this case, you'll need to get Max's B/R Sports Add-On for $9.99 per month, but for a limited time, Max will give you the add-on for free. Max subscriptions start at $9.99 per month with ads. Combined with Paramount+ with Showtime's monthly rate of $11.99, this combo will run you just $21.98 per month after Paramount's free trial ends.

The second configuration also utilizes Paramount+ with Showtime at $11.99 per month for the CBS component. To access TNT, TBS, and truTV, you'll need to buy Sling TV's Orange package and its Entertainment Extra add-on. Sling Orange costs $40 per month, and the add-on is an additional $6, but the first month comes with a special $20 off promo (so you'll only be paying $26 in your first month of service). In total, for Paramount+ and Sling, you'll be paying $37.99 for your first month and $57.99 any month after that.

The third configuration is an all-in-one solution. Hulu + Live TV offers CBS, TNT, TBS, and truTV as a part of its live TV package. The service starts at $76.99 per month with ads and also comes with Disney+, ESPN+, and Hulu's on-demand catalog bundled in.

How to watch March Madness from anywhere

If you're traveling outside the US right now, you can always try a VPN (virtual private network). VPNs bolster your online privacy and allow you to change the server location of your electronic device. This means that you can access websites and apps that might otherwise not be available due to geographical restrictions. Because all of the streaming services we've highlighted require US forms of payment, this option is best for Americans who are simply abroad at the moment.

If you're interested in trying a VPN but don't know where to start, our go-to recommendation is ExpressVPN. It's an easy-to-use option with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Check out our ExpressVPN review and keep reading to learn how to use it.

How to watch March Madness with a VPN

  • Sign up for a VPN if you don't already have one.

  • Install it on the device you're planning to watch on.

  • Turn it on and set it to a US location.

  • Sign up for the relevant live TV streaming services mentioned above with a US form of payment.

  • Select CBS, TNT, TBS, or truTV and enjoy the competition.

Friday First Round games

The First Round, which features 64 teams spread across 32 games, started yesterday. There will be 16 games today, with the first starting at 12:15 p.m. ET. All games are listed below in ET.

  • Florida Atlantic vs. Northwestern, Friday at 12:15 p.m. (CBS)

  • Baylor vs. Colgate, Friday at 12:40 p.m. (truTV)

  • San Diego State vs. UAB, Friday at 1:45 p.m. (TNT)

  • Marquette vs. Western Kentucky, Friday at 2 p.m. (TBS)

  • UConn vs. Stetson, Friday at 2:45 p.m. (CBS)

  • Clemson vs. New Mexico, Friday at 3:10 p.m. (truTV)

  • Auburn vs. Yale, Friday 4:15 p.m. (TNT)

  • Florida vs. Colorado, Friday at 4:30 p.m. (TBS)

  • Nebraska vs. Texas A&M, Friday at  6:50 p.m. (TNT)

  • Duke vs. Vermont, Friday at 7:10 p.m. (CBS)

  • Purdue vs. Grambling, Friday at 7:25 p.m. (TBS)

  • Alabama vs. College of Charleston, Friday at 7:35 pm. (truTV)

  • Houston vs. Longwood, Friday at 9:20 p.m. (TNT)

  • Wisconsin vs. James Madison, Friday at 9:40 p.m. (CBS)

  • Utah State vs. TCU, Friday at 9:55 p.m. (TBS)

  • Saint Mary's vs. Grand Canyon, Friday at 10:05 p.m. (truTV)

Note: The use of VPNs is illegal in certain countries, and using VPNs to access region-locked streaming content might constitute a breach of the terms of use for certain services. Insider does not endorse or condone the illegal use of VPNs.

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