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March 7, 2002

Registration has begun for the seventh annual ESPN Men's Tournament Challenge Presented by Chevy Trucks & Gatorade® Thirst Quencher on ESPN.com, which generated more than 760,000 participants last year, and for the ESPN Women's Tournament Challenge.

The Tournament Challenge, which is free to users, challenges entrants to pick the winners of each game throughout the upcoming NCAA Division I men's and women's basketball tournaments. Entries close on Thursday, March 14 (men's) and Friday, March 15 (women's), just prior to the tip-off of the first games.

"The Tournament Challenge is one of the marquee events on the ESPN.com calendar," said Jim Mcgee, vice president of consumer products, ESPN.com. "The game has seen exponential growth annually, and we expect to have more than a million participants this year."

Entrants are asked to fill out the tournament brackets, selecting the winners of each matchup from the first round through the NCAA Championship game. Points will be earned for each game picked correctly. Point values will increase with each round of play. Entrants may join personalized groups, enabling them to compete head-to-head against friends, family and co-workers throughout the tournament.

Entrants will also be able to check their scores and relative standings regularly on ESPN.com. In the event of a tie, users will be asked to answer one tiebreaker question.

The Men's Tournament Challenge Presented by Chevy Trucks & Gatorade has one grand prize winner - the entrant that accumulates the highest score from among all eligible online entries who will receive a check for $10,000. The top 16 winners, also based on the highest scores, will receive a Gatorade cooler, while the top 64 scorers receive a Gatorade towel. The Women's Tournament Challenge prize is a laptop computer.

ESPN.com tournament coverage begins on Selection Sunday, March 10, with live chats and analysis from ESPN experts such as Dick Vitale, Digger Phelps and Jay Bilas, while ESPN.com senior writer Andy Katz covers the tournament from the top seeds to the Cinderella stories waiting to begin. Once the tournament begins, ESPN.com will provide live scoring, recaps and box scores of each game, analysis by ESPN experts; features and live chats with players and coaches, and complete Final Four coverage from Atlanta.

Anyone wanting to find out more about the tournament, including eligibility requirements and restrictions, should visit http://games.espn.go.com/tcmen/frontpage.