March Madness baby names 2019 winnersMarch Madness baby names 2019 has drawn to a close, and it’s time to announce the winners.

Please join me in congratulating Arlo and Margot, the newest members of our March Madness baby names’ champions circle.

The final match-ups were plenty exciting:

  • The girls’ Mar match-up ended with Margot besting Marigold, almost 60% to just-over-40%. Marigold competed in 2018’s final, too – and lost that contest by an even narrower margin.
  • At last, Arlo takes the prize, with nearly 62% of the vote, versus Torin, which scooped up 38%. If you’ve been following March Madness baby names, you might know that this was Arlo’s third year in the final contest. Arlo lost to Leo in 2017 and Rowan in 2018 – but I guess it’s true that the third time’s the charm!

Arlo and Margot join past winners:

  • Nathaniel and Louisa in 2011
  • Arthur and Genevieve in 2012
  • Archer and Isla in 2013
  • Everett and Cora in 2014
  • Finn and Cora in 2015
  • Theodore and Sylvie in 2016
  • Leo and Wren in 2017
  • Rowan and Eliza in 2018

You’ll note that Cora defended the title in 2015; after that happened, all past March Madness baby names champions were disqualified from future contests.

In the ninth year of competition, it’s fair to say that there’s a definite style for March Madness baby names winners. They’re familiar, but not Top 25. (Or even 100, at least not at the time of the contest.) They’re often names on the upswing, rising in use in the following years. And even though some wild, out-there names always appear in the opening rounds, that’s never where the contest ultimately takes us.

The names that win feel like crowd-pleasers – and I guess that makes sense.

This year’s pair feels even closer than some. They share a strong ‘ar’ sound and that bright, upbeat ‘o’ ending. In fact, they’re probably a little too close for sibling names.

And yet, I’m guessing most of us could happily name a child from this small list of names. (Or maybe many of us already have!)

Our tenth year of competition kicks off on Saturday, March 7, 2020. Between now and then, we’ll have more contests – the fourth annual New Names Showdown in July; October’s third round of the Great Halloween Baby Names contest; and a second edition of the Favorite Celebrity Baby Names contest to round out the year!

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. Congratulations Arlo and Margo! If I named a boy and a girl from all our winners I think I’d go with Archer and Genevieve.

  2. My son knows half a dozen Arlos all his age. He’s almost three. It’s pretty trendy here in New Zealand, it’s even in the top ten. It feels like the next Jackson to me.

  3. Ooh, I like both of these so much and was hoping Margot would win. I almost never back the winner in these contests so this is exciting!