How many times has a No. 1 seed won the NCAA men’s basketball tournament?
This is not to be a Cinderella-hating, bracket-buster buzz kill, but ...
Odds are, a No. 1 seed is going to be snipping net at the end of “One Shining Moment.”
Since the NCAA men’s basketball tournament went to a 64-team field, a No. 1 seed has won 23 of the 36 championships. Baylor’s rout of Gonzaga, a fellow one seed, in last year’s tournament final was the fourth straight by a top dog and the 10th in the last 14 seasons. A two seed (five times) and a three seed (four) have accounted for nine of the remaining 13 titles. The remaining four crowns have gone to four, six, seven and eight seeds.
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The lowest seed to win a championship is Villanova, which won it all in 1985, the inaugural year of the 64-team format.
Last year’s Baylor-Gonzaga matchup was the ninth meeting of two No. 1 seeds since 1985. North Carolina has played in four of those games, winning each of them (1982 against Georgetown; ’93 against Michigan; 2005 against Illinois; and 2017 against Gonzaga).
UCLA has been a top seed in three tournaments since 1985, winning the 1995 national championship. The Bruins also were a No. 1 in 1990 (Elite 8 loss to Indiana) and 2008 (Final Four loss to Memphis).
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