The Lubbock Sheriff's Office says, if money's involved, it's not. But as long as no one's getting a cut other than their winnings and it's a fair pool, there's nothing to worry about. Says Major Don Carter, "I think that it's a really good idea that the businesses take that to heart and realize that this is something that ought to be done off their grounds. It needs to be done in a private place, if people want to do that type of thing, and just make it so it's not part of their business."
So if everyone in your bracket pool has an equal chance to win, it's in a private place, and nobody gets a fee for setting up the bracket, don't expect the sheriff to come knocking at your door.