7 Fun Facts from the NCAA Men’s Tournament History Books

NCAA Men's Final Four Houston 2023 logo

Round 1 of the Men’s 2023 NCAA tournament is now officially in the books and there has already been a fair share of shock and excitement! For only the second time in men’s tournament history, a 16th seed has upset a #1 seed as Fair Dickinson defeated Purdue 63-58 over in the East bracket.

The West bracket went with no major surprises, the Midwest saw 11th seed Pitt defeat 6th seed Iowa State, and the South had two major upsets themselves. The South bracket saw a 15th seed and a 13th seed advance, as (#15) Princeton shocked (#2) Arizona 59-55 and (#13) Furman upset (#4) Virginia 68-67.

There is much more tournament to go but college basketball fans are getting some fun games. Their brackets may be on the verge of collapse, but you can’t get everything in life, right?

In honor of the March Madness season that is upon us, here are ‘7 fun facts’ from the tournament archives…

  1. 2008 was the only year in which all four #1 seeds advanced to the Final Four. The colleges that made it were UCLA, North Carolina, Memphis, and Kansas. Kansas would go on to defeat Memphis in the Finals that year.1
  2. Let’s go back to 1961, the only year in which the two colleges that met in the Finals were from the same state. The Cincinnati Bearcats defeated the Ohio State Buckeyes 70-65.1
  3. The lowest seed to win it all was #8 Villanova in 1985. Three #11 seeds made it to the Final Four (LSU-1986, George Mason-2006, VCU-2011) but neither team made it to the Finals.2
  4. In 1988, Coach Larry Brown led the Kansas Jayhawks to a championship. In 2004, he led the Detroit Pistons to the NBA championship. Coach Brown in the only coach to win a championship at both levels.2
  5. The Connecticut Huskies has been the only college program to win both the men’s and women’s tournament in the same year. In fact, they accomplished this feat twice, in 2004 and 2014.2
  6. The highest scoring game in men’s tournament history took place in the 2nd round of the 1990 tournament. This game featured #11 Loyola Marymount defeating #3 Michigan 149-115. [The Loyola Marymount Lions played in the Top 5 scoring games of all time. They won twice, lost thrice.]3
  7. On March 7, 1970, Notre Dame star Austin Carr scored 61 points in a game against the Ohio Bobcats. This marks the most points ever scored in a tournament game. Carr shot 25 of 44 from the field and 11 of 14 from the free throw line. Carr would also have two other tournament games where he scored 52 points.4
Austin Carr – 2018 – Cleveland Cavaliers announcer

[Featured Image Source: NCAA.com / Austin Carr image source:
Erik Drost
CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons]

Fact Sources:

  1. CollegeInsider.com
  2. TheBestSchools.org
  3. NCAA.com
  4. basketball-reference.com

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