Category Archives: College Sports

Did You Know? Final Four Edition


Here’s a look at a few stats you might not have known about the teams participating in today’s Final Four semi-final games.

Did you know?…

… This will be the 14th match-up of #1 seeds in the Final Four semi-finals since 1979 (when the NCAA went to the seeded format) and the first since 2008 when both semi-finals were games played between #1 seeds (the only year all four #1 seeds made the Final Four). Kentucky will be playing in their fifth #1 seed match-up in the Final Four semis, most of any school. They have won two and lost two of their previous games. The team that has won these #1 vs. #1 games in the semi-finals has only won the championship game five times (losing eight times).

… Wisconsin is one of nine schools to have their football team win 11 games in a season and their men’s basketball team win 30 games at least once since 2010. The others: Baylor, Louisville, Florida, Michigan, Missouri, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Utah State. Wisconsin is one of only three schools to have their football team win 11 games in a season and their men’s basketball team win 30 games both twice since 2010 (also Louisville and Ohio State). The Badgers, Louisville and Ohio State are the only schools to have their football team win 11 games and their men’s basketball team win 30 games in the same season. Ohio State did it in 2010 (their football team won 12 games in 2010; their men’s basketball team won 34 in 2010-11); Louisville did it in 2012 (their football team won 11 in 2012; their men’s basketball team won 35 in 2012-13); Wisconsin did it this year (their football team won 11 in 2014; their men’s basketball team has won 35 in 2014-15).

… In the 37 years since the NCAA went to a seeded format, 22 times there have been two schools from the same conference make the Final Four. This is the 22nd time with both Wisconsin and Michigan State from the Big Ten Conference making the Final Four. In the 21 times previous to this year, a school from that conference has won the championship nine times (1985-Georgetown, 1988-Kansas, 1989-Michigan, 1991-Duke, 1996-Kentucky, 2000-Michigan State, 2001-Duke, 2006-Florida, 2013-Louisville). Since 1979, the Big Ten has had two or more teams in the Final Four seven times (including this year), most of the conferences. The ACC is next with five years, followed by Big East (four times), SEC (three times), Big 12 (twice) and Big Eight (once). Michigan State and Wisconsin both made the Final Four from the Big Ten in 2000 with Michigan State winning the title that year.

… Michigan State and Duke have each lost five times in the Final Four semi-finals. Kentucky has lost three times and Wisconsin twice in the national semis. North Carolina tops the list with nine semi-final losses in the Final Four followed by Louisville with seven. Both Kansas and UCLA have lost five times in the Final Four semis.

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Badgers ‘Elite Eight’ history


For all you Badgers fans who can’t wait until 5:07pm tonight for the game against Arizona to start, here’s a few stats that you may find interesting…

* Wisconsin has won their first three games as a Number One seed in the tournament. In the years since the NCAA went to a seeded format for this tournament, the Badgers have been a #4, #5 and #6 seed most often, each three times since 1979. Here’s a quick look at the team’s win-loss record as each seed since 1979:
Number 1 Seed: 3-0 (through games of March 26, 2015)
Number 2 Seed: 5-2
Number 3 Seed: 2-1
Number 4 Seed: 5-3
Number 5 Seed: 2-3
Number 6 Seed: 3-3
Number 7 Seed: 0-1
Number 8 Seed: 5-2
Number 9 Seed: 1-2
Number 12 Seed: 1-1

* The Badgers have made the Final Four three times, 1941, 2000 and 2014. They won two of those Elite Eight games by one point (1941 and 2014) and the other by a four-point margin (2000).

* This is the first time the Badgers have faced a #2 Seed (Arizona) in their regional.

* This will be the fourth time the Badgers have faced Arizona in the tournament. In 2000, they defeated Arizona, then a #1 seed, in the second round. In 2006 Wisconsin, the #9 seed, lost to Arizona, the #8 seed, in the first round of the tourney. Last season these two teams faced off in the elite 8 game with the Badgers (the #2 seed) defeating Arizona (the #1 seed) 64-63 in overtime.

* The Badgers have played in five Elite Eight games, winning three and losing two. The two losses occurred in 1947 and 2005. In the three games they won to go to the Final Four, the Badgers held their opponents under 64 points.

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“FOUR STATS” you may not know about… the Final Four


Here’s a look at a few stats you may not know about the upcoming NCAA men’s Final Four.

1. Five of the seven teams with 10 or more appearances in the Final Four are still in this year’s tournament. North Carolina and UCLA top the list with the most Final Four appearances with 18. Kentucky is next with 16 and Duke follows with 15. All four of those teams made this year’s Sweet 16. The other three teams on the list: Kansas with 14 Final Fours and Louisville and Ohio State with 10. Of those three, only Louisville is still alive in this year’s event.

2. Two teams that have made 18 or more NCAA tournament appearances but have never appeared in the Final Four are still alive and could possibly break those streak. Xavier has played in 25 (now 26) NCAA tourneys but has never made the Final Four, while Gonzaga has played in 18 (now 19) and has never made it to the Final Four.

3. Prior to this year, Kentucky has played in 35 Elite 8 games, winning 16 and losing 19. Their 19 losses in the Regional Final title game is most on the list. They are followed by Kansas State with nine, Villanova with eight, North Carolina with seven and Ohio State, Kansas, Oklahoma State, Connecticut and Arizona with six losses each. Texas, Oregon State, Illinois, Temple and Michigan have each lost five Regional Final title games. Of these teams listed, only three, Kentucky, North Carolina and Arizona are still alive in this year’s tournament.

4. Missouri tops the list with the most losses in the Regional Final title game with no appearances in the Final Four. Pittsburgh, Arizona State, Boston College and Davidson have each lost three Regional Final title games and have never made it to the Final Four.

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The importance of a conference tourney title for men’s BBall Final Four teams

Will a Big Ten tourney title equal a Final Four appearance this year for the Badgers?

Will a Big Ten tourney title equal a Final Four appearance this year for the Badgers?

Thirty-two of the 68 berths in this year’s NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament come from those schools that won their conference tourney (or in the case of one conference, the Ivy League, which sends the school that won their regular season title), while the remaining 36 schools in the tournament received at-large berths from the selection committee on Sunday.

Since 2000, there have been 60 different teams that have made it to the Final Four in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Over that timeframe, 56.7% of those Final Four teams (34 of the 60) played in their conference tournament championship game the week prior to the NCAA tournament. Twenty-five of the 34 won their conference tourney.

Of last year’s Final Four teams, Billy Donovan’s Florida squad was the only team of the four Final Four teams to win their conference tournament. Two of the teams, eventual champs UConn, and Kentucky, both lost in their conference tourney title games, while Wisconsin was eliminated in the Big Ten tourney in the quarterfinals.

Following are how well the Final Four teams since 2000 (the last 15 tournaments) did in their conference tournaments the week prior to the NCAA tournament.

Final Four teams that won their conference tournament: 25

Final Four teams that lost in the conference tournament title game: 9

Final Four teams that lost in the conference tournament semifinals: 15

Final Four teams that lost in the conference tournament quarterfinals: 10

Final Four teams that did not play in a conference tournament: 1

Did you know? Of the 15 teams that won the NCAA championship this century (2000-2014), nine won their conference tournament. Of the other six, four of those schools, North Carolina in 2009, North Carolina in 2005, Syracuse in 2003 and Maryland in 2002, all lost in their conference semifinals. Last year, UConn lost in their conference tourney title contest and Kentucky lost in their Southeastern Conference championship game to Vanderbilt in 2013.

Did you know? The last year when none of the Final Four teams won their conference tournament was 2009.

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College football’s best (and worst) bowl game teams


The college football bowl season begins today with five bowl games. A total of 39 (27 in December and 12 in January) bowl games will culminate on January 12 when the College Football Championship will be decided. Either Oregon, Florida State, Alabama or Ohio State will raise the trophy at AT & T Stadium in Arlington, Texas as college football’s best team.

A total of 84 schools have played in 10 or more bowl games in their history. Alabama (61) and Texas (52) top the list. Of schools that have played in 10-plus bowl games, Marshall has the best winning percentage in bowl games at .800 (an 8-2 record). Marshall will look to add another win as they face off against Northern Illinois on December 23 in the Boca Raton Bowl. Should Marshall fall to Northern Illinois, Utah, with the second-best bowl record looks to take over the top spot. With a 13-4 (.765 winning percentage) in bowl games, Utah is the only other school with a bowl record above .700 (minimum of 10 bowl game appearances).

Here’s a look at the schools that have the best (and worst) bowl game records in history (minimum of 10 bowl games played to qualify).

Best bowl game records (over .600) 1. Marshall, .800 2. Utah, .765 3. USC, .660 4. Mississippi, .657 5. Boise State, .643 6. Penn State, .636 7. Florida State, .634 8. Oklahoma State, .625 9. Auburn, .622 10. Syracuse, .600 11. Toledo, .615 12. Oklahoma, .606 13. Oregon State .600 14. Wake Forest, .600

Worst bowl game records (under .400) 1. Northwestern, .182 2. Iowa State, .250 3. Duke, .300 4. Nevada, .308 5. Minnesota, .313 6. New Mexico, .350 7. Tulane, .364 8. South Carolina, .368 9. Virginia Tech, .370 10. Arkansas, .372 11. UTEP, .385 12. Virginia, .389 13. Michigan State, .391

Three of the 14 schools in the “Best record” list are not playing in bowl games this year: Syracuse, Oregon State and Wake Forest. Five of the schools in the “Worst record” list are absent from the bowl schedule this year: New Mexico, Northwestern, Tulane, Iowa State and Virginia.

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