The NCAA tournament is looming and your co-workers or friends want you to enter their bracket pool. However, you haven't watched a single NCAA men's basketball game all season and you can't tell the difference between a Blue Devil and a Sun Devil.

No worries -- you don't need to be a basketball genius to enter a bracket in a pool.

After all, there are more than 9 quintillion ways to fill out a bracket (9,223,372,036,854,775,808 possibilities, to be exact) and that's not including the "First Four" play-in games, in which case that number climbs to more than 147 quintillion.

In other words, if you nail a perfect bracket, you may want to start playing the lottery as well.

Whether you're in it to win it or just playing for fun, we've got some tips to ensure your bracket is a solid contender this -- or any other -- year.

filling out college basketball tournament bracket, office pool

No. 5: Stick with highest seeds

It might not be the most entertaining -- nor the riskiest -- way to fill out an NCAA bracket, but simply picking the top seeds to win each game gets the job done and will at least save you from embarrassing yourself.

Top seeds not only don't lose in the first round, they also tend to stick around longer. Historically speaking, No. 1 seeds have an 86 percent chance of winning at least two games before heading home.

Remember that, and the fact that last year the four No. 16 seeds were blown out by an average of more than 28 points, before you get cute and pick that first-round upset.

Things aren't much brighter one seed up the bracket ladder, with No. 15 teams posting a 4-100 record in the first round since 1985. And of those four Cinderellas, none of them were able to win another tourney game.

glass slipper, Cinderella

No. 4: Choose your upsets carefully

Don't take our warnings about No. 15 and No. 16 seeds to mean you should avoid picking upsets all together.

While it can be tricky to predict Cinderellas, if you want to spice up your bracket be sure to select a few games that notoriously produce an underdog winner.

The most likely games to result in upsets tend to be the Nos. 5-12, 6-11 and 7-10 matchups. Looking at historical numbers (No. 10 seeds are 19-23 in the second round while No. 7 teams are 17-45), it especially makes sense to target a No. 10 seed to not only pull a first-round upset, but also to send a No. 2 packing on its way to the Sweet 16.

When it comes to No. 8 vs. No. 9 games, they are statistically a coin flip. So simply focus on picking the better team. However, if your league offers bonus points for picking the lower seed to win, a smart move might be to simply pick all No. 9 seeds.

Duke North Carolina 2011, college basketball

No. 3: When in doubt, go with tradition

If you really can't decide which team will win a matchup, go with the more storied squad. In the NCAA tournament, teams with experience tend to be annual contenders, so going with a school such as Duke, North Carolina or Connecticut can be a wise pick.