Daily Archives: March 19th, 2012

Sweet Sixteen teams: The usual suspects with a dose of Cinderella

Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a sports statistics blog published multiple times weekly focusing on stats that go beyond the numbers.

The Xavier vs. Virginia Sweet 16 matchup as pa...

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The first week of the NCAA men’s Div. I basketball tournament is in the books and we have our Sweet Sixteen contingent. All four number 1 seeds advanced, as did a pair of #2 seeds, a pair of #3 seeds and three #4 seeds. Back in 1985, the NCAA went to a 64-team field for this tournament. Since that year, 61.6% of the teams making it to the Sweet Sixteen were teams that started the tourney as a #1, #2, #3 or #4 seed. Another way of looking at this stat is that in the past 28 years of the tournament, 172 teams that were a #5 seed or lower made it to the Sweet Sixteen, an average of just over six teams per tournament (this year there are five teams seeded lower than a #4 seed still in the tourney).

Here’s a quick look at how many of each seed made it to the round of 16 in the tournament since 1985.

#1 seed…98 teams     #2 seed…72 teams     #3 seed…57 teams     #4 seed…49 teams

#5 seed…39 teams     #6 seed…38 teams     #7 seed…19 teams     #8 seed…10 teams

#9 seed…4 teams      #10 seed…21 teams     #11 seed…15 teams    #12 seed…19 teams

#13 seed…5 teams    #14 seed…2 teams       #15 seed…0 teams     #16 seed…0 teams

Here’s a few interesting notes about the seeds of the Sweet Sixteen teams from 1985 through 2012.

* #1 seeds: At least three of the number 1 seeds have made it to the round of 16 every year since 2005. At least three #1 seeds have made the Sweet Sixteen in 26 of the 28 tournaments; at least two #1 seeds has made the Sweet Sixteen every year.

* #2 seeds: At least two #2 seeds have made the Sweet Sixteen every year since 2001.

* #3 seeds: The only year that there was no #3 seed in the Sweet Sixteen was 1997.

* #4 seeds: Three #4 seeds in the Sweet Sixteen this year is the most since 2000 when three #4 seeds made it to the round of 16.

* #5 seeds: No #5 seed made the Sweet Sixteen this year breaking a streak of 19 straight tournaments that a #5 seed has been in the final 16.

* #6 seeds: This is only the second year in the past five that a #6 seed has made it to the round of 16.

* #7 seeds: #7 Florida this year is the first #7 in the Sweet Sixteen since 2008.

* #8 seeds: Only two #8 seeds have made it to the Sweet Sixteen in the last 10 years.

* #9 seeds: Only two #9 seeds have made it to the Sweet Sixteen in the last 18 years.

* #10 seeds: Three #10 seeds made the final 16 in 1999.

* #11 seeds: A #11 seed has made the Sweet Sixteen three straight years.

* #12 seeds: At least one #12 seed has made the Sweet Sixteen in eight of the last 12 tournaments.

* #13 seeds: #13 Ohio this year is the first #13 seed in the Sweet Sixteen since 2007.