A Look Back at the Last Three March Madness Tourneys

Florida Gulf Coast, Sherwood Brown

A Look Back at the Last Three March Madness Tourneys

The unique chaos of the NCAA Men’s College Basketball Tournament is right around the corner. The familiar sport of basketball will soon be transformed into the greatest sporting event on the college stage. And all we have to do is get ready and enjoy what should turn out to be a wild tournament, if it’s anything like the previous three. While we prepare for March Madness by filling out our brackets and loading up on junk food, let’s also take a quick look at how the last three tournaments unfolded.



The most recent tournament was also one of the most memorable in recent memory. In classic March Madness form, 15-seeded Florida Gulf Coast defeated 2-seeded Georgetown and 7-seeded San Diego State on its way to the Sweet 16. The Cinderella story that we all now know as Dunk City ended to in-state opposition Florida—a 3 seed. The other headliner was 9-seeded Wichita State making their second-ever Final Four appearance, knocking out 1-seeded Gonzaga and 2-seeded Ohio State along the way. The Final Four featured a four-point win for Louisville over Wichita State and a five-point win for Michigan over Syracuse. The tournament ended with Louisville as champion after defeating Michigan by a score of 82-76. This tournament will also be always remembered for the Kevin Ware injury, which I will NOT post the video of due to the graphic nature.



The tournament two years ago introduced a field of 68 teams for the first time, expanding it from 64. March Madness in 2012 gave everyone a show, from businessmen in California to students at Vista College, as two 2-seeds went down in the very first round of the tournament. In those games, Duke was upset by Lehigh University and Missouri fell to Norfolk State. It marked the first time that two 2-seeds lost in the first round. Another first in 2012 was one state providing four Sweet Sixteen teams—Ohio State, Cincinnati, Ohio and Xavier. Of those four teams, Xavier had to make it as a 10-seed and Ohio was even more impressive as they entered the tournament as a 13-seed. In the Final Four, Kentucky won a rematch of their regular-season game against Louisville by a near-identical score before easily handling Kansas in another rematch from the regular season to earn the title of college basketball champions.



In one of the craziest tournaments to date, the 2011 college basketball tournament became the first tournament in which no 1- or 2-seeded teams earned a spot in the Final Four. It was also the year of Kemba Walker, who delivered a number of magnificent moments from UConn’s conference tournament to the championship game in which he lead the Huskies to victory over Butler. Butler getting to the championship game was an amazing story in itself. The Bulldogs and head coach Brad Stevens shocked the basketball world by getting to the final game as an 8-seed after beating the 4-seeded Wisconsin and 2-seeded Florida. And despite coming up short in the final game, Butler made history by making the Final Four in consecutive years and being seeded lower than a 2-seed—the first team to do so.

What’s in store for this year? We’ll find out VERY soon. Get ready for March Madness!