NCAA Division I Men's Tournament Trivia
- Since Kentucky won their championship in 1978 as the #1 team going into the tournament, only four teams have won the National Championship while being ranked #1 in the polls going into the tourney - 1982 North Carolina, 1992 Duke, 1995 UCLA and 2001 Duke.
- Since the NCAA started seeding teams (1979), only four times has the championship matched two #1 seeds:
- 1982 North Carolina vs. Georgetown
- 1993 North Carolina vs. Michigan
- 1999 Duke vs. Connecticut
- 2005 North Carolina vs. Illinois
- Only twice since full seeding of all tournament teams began in 1979 have no #1 seeds made the Final Four:
- Since the expansion to 64 teams in 1985, there has never been a case where all four #1 seeds made it to the Final Four.
- The closest it has ever come to this was in 1993 when three #1 seeds (Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina) and a #2 seed (Kansas) made it.
- On two other occasions, three #1 seeds made it to the Final Four accompanied by a #4 seed:
- 1997 (#1 seeds: Kentucky, Minnesota, North Carolina; #4 seed: Arizona)
- 1999 (#1 seeds: Connecticut, Duke, Michigan State; #4 seed: Ohio State).
- The only team to beat three #1 seeds in a single tournament was #4 seed Arizona in 1997 (it's impossible to beat all four #1 seeds in a single tournament).
- The 2006 tournament was the first tournament in an even-numbered year since 1990 in which one of the #1 seeds did not lose in the second round. (This means that from 1990-2004 inclusive, a #1 seed was upset during the tournament's first weekend every other year.) Since the tournament expanded to 64 teams, no #1 seed has lost in the second round in an odd-numbered year.
- A #1 seed has never lost in the first round to a #16 seed.
- Lowest seeds to reach each round since 1985 (Sweet Sixteen onward):
- While lower seeds have made the Final Four in the 64-team era (as shown above), the University of Pennsylvania's 1979 appearance is notable as they made it as a #9 seed—out of 10 teams in their region. In fact, they defeated the #10 seed, St. John's University in the regional final, following three upsets by each team.
- Additionally, in 1980, UCLA made the title game as an #8 seed (with 12 seeds in each region), a record tied by Villanova in the 64-team era. However, UCLA's run was later vacated by the NCAA
- No #16 seed has defeated a #1 seed since the field was expanded to 64 teams, though some have come close. Eleven #16 seeds have come within 10 points of a #1 seed, with five of them coming within 5 points. Two have come within one point. Only one #16-#1 game has gone to overtime (Murray State vs. Michigan State in 1990). The five #16 seeds that have come within 5 points of a #1 seed are:
- Only four #15 seeds have ever defeated #2 seeds:
- Since the inception of the 64-team tournament in 1985 each seed # has played a total of 88 first-round games.
- The #1 seed has beaten the #16 seed all 88 times (100%).
- The #2 seed has beaten the #15 seed 84 times (95%).
- The #3 seed has beaten the #14 seed 73 times (83%).
- The #4 team has beaten the #13 seed 70 times (80%).
- The #5 seed has beaten the #12 seed 59 times (67%).
- The #6 seed has beaten the #11 seed 61 times (69%).
- The #7 team has beaten the #10 seed 53 times (60%).
- The #8 team has beaten the #9 seed 41 times (47%).
One-Loss and Unbeaten Teams
- Since the Indiana Hoosiers went undefeated in 1976, no team entering the tournament undefeated or with only 1 loss has gone on to win the national championship.
- In 1979, Indiana State entered the national championship game undefeated (33-0) before losing to Michigan State.
- Both Illinois (in 2005) and Duke (in 1999) entered their national championship games with 37-1 records, only to lose in the final game.
- Massachusetts (35-1) in 1996 (later vacated) and UNLV (34-0) in 1991 both lost their national semifinal games.
- Kansas entered the 1997 NCAA Tournament with a record of 32-1, but was beaten in the sweet sixteen by the eventual champion, Arizona.
- In 2004, Saint Joseph's finished the regular season undefeated and entered the tournament with a 27-1 record, but lost in the East Regional Final to Oklahoma State, 64-62, on a 3-pointer by John Lucas with 6.9 seconds remaining.
- The 1976 tournament was also the last to feature two unbeaten teams—eventual champion Indiana and Rutgers. Rutgers went 31-0 before losing in both the semifinals (to Michigan) and the third-place game (to UCLA).
- In 1966, Texas Western (UTEP) became the first Division I school to ever win the championship with a starting lineup of all African American players. This story was the inspiration for a movie, Glory Road. This game occurred at Cole Field House on the campus of the University of Maryland, College Park. This was the first of two games hosted at this venue.
- All team, official, and committee travel for the tournament (and for the NCAA as a whole year-round) is handled by a single travel agency: Short's Travel Management in Waterloo, Iowa.
- The winning team is traditionally given the floor from the championship venue to keep. What the school does with it varies: some schools sell pieces of it to fans, others simply put it in storage, and still others use it in their venues, such as Florida did in 2006, re-painting the RCA Dome hardwood and placing it in the O'Connell Center. The only exception to this was in 1978: for that year's Final Four, the NCAA had to truck in Indiana's court from Assembly Hall to the Checkerdome in St. Louis, as the basketball floor at that hockey arena had been warped as a result of water damage.
- The NCAA has banned the Bi-Lo Center and Colonial Center in South Carolina from hosting tournament games, despite their sizes (16,000 and 18,000 seats, respectively) because of an NAACP protest at the Bi-Lo Center during the 2002 first and second round tournament games over that state's refusal to take down the Confederate Battle Flag from their state capitol. Following requests by the NAACP and Black Coaches Association, the Bi-Lo Center, and the newly built Colonial Center, which was built for purposes of hosting the tournament, were banned from hosting any future tournament events.
- Prior to 2004, each region of the tournament bracket was identified geographically, e.g. West, Midwest, South, East. With the 2004 tournament, the regionals were identified by the city in which the regional finals were held, e.g. Phoenix, St. Louis, Atlanta, East Rutherford in 2004; Albuquerque, Chicago, Austin, Syracuse in 2005, etc. The official reason for this was that the regional identifications had begun to confuse fans now that first and second round sites were no longer tied to a particular region; for example, even though in 2002 the Indiana Hoosiers played in the South regional finals held in Lexington, Kentucky, it began the tournament playing in Sacramento, until then a city considered part of the West region. Another possible reason for the shift in identification is that not infrequently the regional final sites did not fit easily into geographical boundaries. For example, in the 1979 tournament, the Mideast regional site was Indianapolis, while the Midwest site was Cincinnati, which is 90 miles to the southeast of Indianapolis. In 1987, the Midwest regionals site was again Cincinnati, and the Southeast site was in Louisville, 90 miles to the southwest. In 1994, the Southeast regional finals site, Knoxville, Tennessee, was actually the northernmost of the four sites (West: Los Angeles; Midwest: Dallas; East: Miami). The geographic confusion was not limited to regional finals sites; in 1990, Atlanta hosted first- and second-round games in the East regional, while Richmond, Virginia, 530 miles to the northeast of Atlanta, hosted first- and second-round games in the Southeast regional. However, regional sites will revert to being identified geographically beginning in 2007.
- Greatest margin of victory in a championship game: 30 points (UNLV 103–Duke 73, 1990).
- Smallest margin of victory in a championship game: 1 point
Back to NCAA Division I Men's Tournament