Colorado's Josh Fortune (44) takes a shot during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Boulder.

(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

The University of Colorado plays the University of Connecticut in the first round of the NCAA men's basketball tournament Thursday.

The Buffaloes are not favored, despite being a slightly higher seed (Colorado is 8th, Connecticut 9th in the South Region), and would likely face even tougher odds in the second round against top-seeded Kansas. Overall, Colorado has less than a 1 percent chance of winning the whole tournament, according to the website FiveThirtyEight.

Still, the team's chances are better than the odds of anyone filling out a perfect bracket, according to CU professor of applied mathematics Mark Ablowitz. He calculates the odds of picking all 63 games right at about 9 quintillion to one. 

"More likely? Winning the Powerball a couple of times," Ablowitz says.

The chances of picking the Sweet 16 correctly are slightly higher, at 280 trillion to one.

Colorado tips off at 1:30 p.m. on Thursday in Des Moines, Iowa, while teams from the Midwest Region battle it out at the Pepsi Center in Denver. The arena will host first and second round action on Thursday and Saturday.

Also on Saturday, the 11th-seeded Colorado State University women's team plays its first round game against South Florida at 9 p.m.