Tag Archives: Final four

Schools that have multiple Final Four appearances but no title

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

University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This year’s quartet of men’s Final Four teams have each made multiple trips to the Final Four (Kentucky 15th, Kansas 14th, Ohio State 11th and Louisville 9th) and have each won a national title (Kentucky 7, Kansas 3, Louisville 2 and Ohio State 1).

There have been, however, several schools that have made multiple trips to the Final Four yet have not won a championship. Following are the schools that have made three or more trips to the Final Four but are still waiting for their first title. Also noted is the number of Championship Games they have played in, and the last time they played in the Final Four. Those schools with two Final Four appearances are also noted.

School, Final Four appearances (Championship Games) Last Final Four appearance

Houston……….5 (2) 1984

Illinois………….5 (1) 2005

Kansas State…4 (1) 1964

LSU……………..4 (0) 2006

Oklahoma…….4 (2) 2002

Iowa…………….3 (1) 1980

Memphis………3 (2) 2008

Texas……………3 (0) 2003

Schools with two Final Four appearances but no title: Baylor, Bradley, Butler, Colorado, Dartmouth, DePaul, Georgia Tech, NYU, Oregon State, Providence, Purdue, St. John’s, Temple, USC, Virginia, West Virginia.

Is winning a conference tournament a precursor to the Final Four?

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

Rick Pitino during a game against West Virgini...

Rick Pitino's Louisville team is the only Final Four team this year to win its conference tournament. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Since 2000, there have been 52 different teams that have made it to the Final Four in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Over that timeframe, just under 54% of those Final Four teams (28 of the 52) played in their conference tournament championship game the week prior to the NCAA tournament. Twenty-three of the 28 won their conference tourney.

Of this year’s Final Four teams, Rick Pitino’s Louisville squad was the only one to win its conference tournament (they won the Big East Conference tournament); Kentucky and Ohio State both lost in their conference title game, while Kansas was defeated in the Big 12 conference semifinals.

In 2011, three of the Final Four teams won their conference tournament (Connecticut, Butler and Kentucky) and the fourth team, VCU, lost in the title game. In 2010, again three Final Four teams won their conference tournament (Duke, Butler and West Virginia) while Final Four participant Michigan State was defeated in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten tournament.

Following are how well the Final Four teams since 2000 (the last 13 tournaments) did in their conference tournaments prior to the NCAA tournament.

Final Four teams that won their conference tournament: 23

Final Four teams that lost in the conference tournament title game: 5

Final Four teams that lost in the conference tournament semifinals: 14

Final Four teams that lost in the conference tournament quarterfinals: 9

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

Did you know? Of the 12 teams that won the NCAA championship this century (2000-2011), eight won their conference tournament. The other four, North Carolina in 2009, North Carolina in 2005, Syracuse in 2003 and Maryland in 2002, all lost in their conference semifinals.

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

SIX STATS you might not know about… Final Four teams (the seed history)

SIX STATS is a bonus feature of Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’

Stretching before the 2006 NCAA Men's Division...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Past history in the NCAA men’s Final Four is pointing to a Kentucky national championship. Here’s a look at some stats from the past 33 tournaments (in 1979 the NCAA went to seeding all the teams) and how team seeds have performed in the past.

1. A number one seed has won the NCAA men’s championship 20 times in the last 33 years. Since 1992 (the last 20 years) a #1 seed has won the tourney 14 times.

2. Kentucky is the only #1 seed in this year’s tournament. In the 11 times when there was only one #1 seed in the Final Four, that number one seed won the championship six times. This is the 31st time in the last 34 years of the tournament that at least one #1 seed has been in the Final Four.

3. This is the fifth time since 1979 that two #2 seeds are in the Final Four (1979, 1994, 1995, 2004). In the four previous times when two #2 seeds made the Final Four, one of those #2 seeds won the title (Michigan State in 1979 and Connecticut in 2004). Six #2 seeds have won the title since 1979, the last being Connecticut in 2004.

4. Louisville is the 12th #4 seed to make it to the Final Four since 1979. Only one #4 seed has ever won the championship: Arizona in 1997.

5. The lowest seeded team of the Final Four teams has won the tournament five times (Indiana as a #3 seed in 1981; North Carolina State as a #6 seed in 1983; Villanova as a #8 seed in 1985; Kansas as a #6 seed in 1988; and Arizona as a #4 seed in 1997).

6. This is only the second time since 1979 that two #2 seeds will face off in a Final Four semi-final game. This is the sixth time that a #1 seed will face a #4 seed in a Final Four semi-final. The #1 seed has won four of those five games.

Greatest upsets in the last two weeks of the NCAA basketball tournament

March Madness Experience logo

March Madness Experience logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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

Now that we’re down to the last two weeks of the college basketball season, let’s take a look at the upsets that have shaped the final rounds of the tourney. The criteria I’m using is to look at the seeds of each team and the biggest difference in those seed numbers by teams that were ranked lower than the team they defeated. There are three Sweet Sixteen match-ups on Thursday and Friday that could join the upsets listed below if the lower seeds can win: Xavier (#10 seed) vs. Baylor (#3), North Carolina (#1) vs. Ohio (#13), and Kansas (#1) vs. North Carolina State (#11).

Here are the greatest upsets in the Sweet Sixteen, Elite Eight, Final Four and Championship Game in the NCAA tournament since 1979 when all teams were seeded in the brackets. (To qualify for the list the team that won had to have been seeded five spots or more lower than the team they defeated.)

SWEET SIXTEEN, seed difference, year, teams

9     1986: LSU (#11 seed) defeated Georgia Tech (#2 seed)

7     1987: LSU (#10 seed) defeated DePaul (#3 seed)

7     1991 Temple (#10 seed) defeated Oklahoma (#3 seed)

7     2002: Kent State (#10 seed) defeated Pittsburgh (#3 seed)

7     2008: Davidson (#10 seed) over Wisconsin (#3 seed)

5     1979: Penn (#9 seed) over Syracuse (#4 seed)

ELITE EIGHT, seed difference, year, teams

10     1986: LSU (#11 seed) defeated Kentucky (#1 seed)

10     2006: George Mason (#11 seed) defeated Connecticut (#1 seed)

10     2011: VCU (#11 seed) defeated Kansas (#1 seed)

6      1985: Villanova (#8 seed) defeated North Carolina (#2 seed)

6      2011: Butler (#8 seed) defeated Florida (#2 seed)

5      1983: North Carolina State (#6 seed) defeated Virginia (#1 seed)

5      1987: Providence (#6 seed) defeated Georgetown (#1 seed)

5      1992: Michigan (#6 seed) defeated Ohio State (#1 seed)

FINAL FOUR, seed difference, year, teams

6     1985: Villanova (#8 seed) defeated Memphis State (#2 seed)

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME, seed difference, year, teams

7     1985: Villanova (#8 seed) defeated Georgetown (#1 seed)

5     1983: North Carolina State (#6 seed) defeated Houston (#1 seed)

5     1988: Kansas (#6 seed) defeated Oklahoma (#1 seed)