Nearly four hours before the scheduled women's NCAA Tournament bracket reveal on ESPN, the network accidentally leaked the entire bracket on Monday during the 3 p.m. Eastern hour on ESPNU.
ESPN acknowledged its error in a statement.
"In working with the NCAA to prepare for tonight's Women's Selection Special we received the bracket, similar to years past. In the midst of our preparation, the bracket was mistakenly posted on ESPNU," it said in the statement. "We deeply regret the error and extend our apology to the NCAA and the women's basketball community. We will conduct a thorough review of our process to ensure it doesn't happen in the future. We will now broadcast the full bracket at 5 p.m. ET on ESPN2, and the regularly-scheduled show on ESPN at 7 p.m."
Several people on Twitter noticed the huge gaffe while watching ESPNU and tweeted about it.
In what can only be described as remarkable, the #NCAAW bracket was just on ESPNU by mistaken. I've managed to grab three sections of it if anyone else wants to help fill it out.- Blake DuDonis (@BlakeDuDonis) March 18, 2019
Spoiler: UCF & Tennessee are IN pic.twitter.com/xzpKpGpjdT
So UConn found out several hours earlier than anticipated that it was selected as a No. 2 seed for the first time since 2006 and will face No. 15 Towson in the Albany bracket on Friday.
The NCAA also released a statement about the blunder.
"An unfortunate technical error by ESPN revealed the 2019 NCAA Division I Women's Basketball Championship bracket earlier today. We regret the network's mistake and are working with our partners at ESPN to prevent similar errors in future years. We look forward to collaborating with ESPN to bring fans exciting women's basketball tournament coverage throughout the remainder of the championship."
The Huskies went 31-2 this season with losses to then-No. 8 Baylor and then-No. 3 Louisville. The four No. 1 seeds are Louisville, Baylor, Notre Dame and Mississippi State.
If UConn wins, it will play the winner of No. 7 Rutgers vs. No. 10 Buffalo. They are in the same region as Louisville. The Huskies have been knocked out in the Final Four each of the last two years.