watch ncaa basketball online

How to Watch NCAA Basketball Online

Last updated on March 11, 2020
Unless you’ve been living under a rock somewhere, you’ve probably noticed that everyone’s talking about college basketball. If you’re wondering why then you’re clearly living next door to the person under the rock because it’s March and March means March Madness! While this may be the highlight of the NCAA year, it’s not the only event you might want to watch live online.

The National Collegiate Athletic Association may have faced some serious accusations by the FBI over the past couple of years but that hasn’t made much impact on the millions of Americans who enjoy watching NCAA action each year.

Indeed, it seems likely that more people than ever will tune into one of the biggest events in basketball this year so, if you don’t want to be the odd one out, you’ve only got a few days to figure out how to watch NCAA basketball online. Thankfully, we’re here to show you the way.

How to Watch College Basketball Online Free Streaming

So you’re a big fan but not big enough to want to part with any money. The NCAA know you exist and are offering three glorious hours of free viewing with their NCAA March Madness app. Compatible with pretty much every device imaginable, the NCAA March Madness app not only gives you access to live coverage but also exclusive content that isn’t available elsewhere, the opportunity to participate in the Capital One March Madness Bracket Challenge, as well as in-depth analysis and highlights.

The drawback of the NCAA March Madness app is that, once your free hours are finished, you need to sign in with a participating TV channel to continue watching. With 17 available platforms, there’s plenty of scope and this year you can even watch using an Oculus Go virtual reality headset. The NCAA March Madness app will give you access to every game, either live or on-demand, and can be used in conjunction with the following devices:

  • Amazon Fire TV
  • Android phones and tablets
  • Apple TV
  • iPhones and iPads
  • Roku

How to Watch NCAA Basketball Without Cable

There was a time, in the distant past, where you needed a thing called cable if you wanted to watch any live sports events at all. Times and technology have changed all that, however, and now you can cut the cord and still stay connected. If you want to watch NCAA basketball online, one of the cheapest options is CBS All Access but, unfortunately, that won’t quite live up to its name.

CBS has the broadcasting rights for a lot of the action but won’t be covering the first four games. Admittedly, this is hardly the end of the world and given the convenience and affordability of the CBS All Access app, being able to stream NCAA basketball from the fifth match onwards is pretty impressive.

With a reliable device and a solid internet connection, you can watch NCAA tournament online using a number of online TV services. The majority of these services are only available to viewers in the US so, if you’ve got a big trip lined up in the next few weeks, you’ll have to look into using a VPN to fake a US IP address for you so you can continue streaming NCAA basketball.

The top streaming services covering NCAA include:

  1. DirecTV
  2. Hulu + LiveTV
  3. YouTube TV
  4. Fubo TV
  5. SlingTV

How to Use a VPN to Watch NCAA Basketball Online

Although online TV has solved many issues for many cord cutters, it still proves challenging so those who spend a lot of time traveling overseas. All the online TV channels mentioned above limit access according to location so, to watch DirecTV or YouTube TV, you need to be inside the United States. This is frustrating for those who have a subscription but won’t in the country for the annual celebration of college basketball.

All is not lost, however, as a VPN can make your online TV provider believe that you’re in Indiana when you’re actually drinking tea in India.

A VPN is designed to enable users to explore the virtual world unseen by masking their real IP address and geographical location and creating a fake one in its place. As with any service, some VPNs operate more effectively than others, giving their users high-speed, reliable connections anywhere in the world, thereby guaranteeing that you’ll be able to watch NCAA basketball online regardless of your location.

The best VPNs for live sports streaming will give you superhuman abilities so you’ll be able to leap over China’s Firewall and watch your favorite team’s March Madness bid even if you’re visiting Zhangjiajie National Forest Park at the time. Unfortunately, as good at the best VPNs are, the worst are worse than awful, compromising your security, stealing your bandwidth and selling your personal data to the highest bidder.

This is why we at Secure Thoughts have put in the time effort and create a list of reliable VPN services that don’t cost the earth but will give you reliable access so you can stream NCAA basketball from any international location.

How To Live Stream College Basketball Outside The US

#1 ExpressVPN

Fast, reliable and at the cutting edge of security and privacy, ExpressVPN is the answer to all your live sports streaming problems. Whether you want to watch golf, tennis or college basketball, ExpressVPN will make it possible. With a flawless reputation for protecting their clients’ privacy, unrivaled speeds, and one of the most extensive international server networks, ExpressVPN is at the top of its game and looks to stay that way.

Not only can ExpressVPN perform the impressive feat of getting around the numerous restrictions impeding internet usage in China, but it’s also been consistent in accessing Netflix. While that may not seem relevant, any VPN that can get into Netflix, can get into anywhere else as well, be it geographical restricted sports streams or porn sites.

ExpressVPN is compatible across multiple platforms and easy enough for a beginner but customizable enough for an advanced user as well. ExpressVPN is currently giving away three months’ free subscription so now is the time to find out if the best is good enough for you.

Read our full review of ExpressVPN here.

To watch NCAA basketball with ExpressVPN, click here now.

#2 Surfshark VPN

Just as the underdogs have a fair chance at beating the favorites in the NCAA tournament, so Surfshark VPN has been snapping at ExpressVPN’s heels since it was established last year. A much smaller server network doesn’t seem to impede the speed or reliability of Surfshark VPN and it’s been passing speed tests with flying colors all over the world.

As compatible as it is affordable, Surfshark VPN can do everything ExpressVPN can do while giving users the unprecedented freedom to connect as many devices as they like at any one time. Surfshark VPN hasn’t really been around long enough to prove itself when it comes to the no-logging policy but every indication suggests that it’s playing by the rules.

This Cinderella choice is the George Mason of the VPN world and well worth investing in before everyone else sees its potential.

Read our full review of Surfshark VPN here.

To watch March Madness with Surfshark VPN, click here now.

#3 NordVPN

NordVPN is a Rottweiler when it comes to protecting your privacy and online security and has some of the best encryption and security features around. Like ExpressVPN, NordVPN has a massive global network of servers, making it one of the best choices for frequent fliers.

Like both ExpressVPN and Surshark VPN, NordVPN is situated outside the five and 14 eyes alliances, meaning that they are under no obligation to store or share information about you or your online activity. While that may not be a big deal when it comes to accessing an NCAA live stream, if you’re connecting from a heavily restricted country like China, its wide ranging servers will protect you from authorities’ prying eyes.

Using a graphic map to guide you through its available servers, NordVPN is simple to use and quick to set up, although users may experience some lag and reduced speeds in certain, far-flung locations. This factor alone has knocked NordVPN down to the number three spot but doesn’t detract from its strong performance as a reliable all-rounder.

Read our full review of NordVPN here.

To watch March Madness with NordVPN, click here now.

#4 CyberGhost VPN

Everything about CyberGhost VPN is designed to give the user a friendly and comfortable online experience. Simple to use and designed to make secure online browsing accessible to the most technologically resistant users, CyberGhost VPN has dedicated live streaming channels that can be easily modified to include your favorite channels for watching NCAA online.

With CyberGhost VPN, you can check out a server’s traffic and speeds before connecting, or just let the app do it for you with its auto-connect function. CyberGhost VPN may not be lifting the trophy this year, but it made it through to the final four with the kind of ease and fluidity we’d expect from this top VPN provider. Connect up to seven simultaneous devices and make use of the kill switch to ensure your data remains secure even if your connection fails.

CyberGhost VPN’s specialized streaming channels include ESPN but can also be customized so you can add your favorite live sports streaming channels and connect with a single click. Simple, fast, and user-friendly, CyberGhost VPN may not attract the nerds, but for beginners, it’s a breeze.

Read our full review of CyberGhost VPN here.

To watch NCAA basketball with CyberGhost VPN, click here now.

Bottom Line

The NCAA has its fair share of spills and thrills over the year and never more so than in the lead up to March Madness. The tournament has barely even begun and already one of the favorites, the Duke Blue Devils, is facing something of a crisis after one of their star players, Zion Williamson, limped off the court last month with a knee injury.

To make sure you don’t miss any of the first-round upsets or the final four highlights, you need to sign up to a service like CBS All Access and, if you’re going to be out of the country at any point between now and the beginning of April, a reliable VPN. CBS All Access won’t cost you a fortune and, if you sign up with ExpressVPN, you’ll get three free months of protection that will see you through to the end of the 2019 tournament.

Sports fans will be used to the fact that most major sporting events have some geographical restrictions that prevent them from watching online from certain locations. A VPN can give you the freedom to enjoy all your favorite sports whether you’re at home or overseas, so is a worthwhile investment, especially given their competitive prices.

Embrace online live streaming and use a VPN to guarantee access. You never know, 2019 might just be your year for conquering the bracket challenge, but only if you have cable or watch NCAA basketball online.

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