Each time a new edition of March Madness begins, teams do all they can to chase the glory that comes with being known as the NCAA Tournament winner. As basketball teams go head to head to lead the way by striving to set a new record, all the action that will be taking place on the court will ultimately determine who will win the championship.
As March Madness fans prepare to place their bets and consult on those March Madness odds, some supporters may be interested in learning which teams actually accomplished the feat and earned their spot on being one of the best teams in the history of NCAA basketball. So, we’ve put together a list of the best NCAA Tournament winners of all time.
The Best NCAA Tournament Teams
It was in 1957 that the Tar Heels put in all the work to complete the season with a perfect 32-0 score. The team ended the tournament run with two triple-overtime wins while playing against Kansas and Michigan State. At the time, fans went all out in joining North Carolina as they celebrated their double overtime win during the national championship that took place over Kansas.
In 1982, the North Carolina team was made up of a star-studded cast that included players like Sam Perkins, Michael Jordan, and James Worthy. While being coached and led by Dean Smith, the team went 32-2 and continued to edge Georgetown during the championship.
North Carolina State
In 1974, the Wolfpack returned to beat UCLA after failing to powerhouse the team at the beginning of the season. With a strong comeback, North Carolina State won against the team, in double overtime, during the Final Four. This came before working hard to top Marquette so the team could win it all after achieving a score of 30-1.
In 1968, one of John Wooden’s champions had a 29-1 blemish. This came from a loss against Houston while playing in the “Game of the Century.” But despite the slight setback, the team returned to avenge itself during the national semifinals when they scored a 32-pint win on the way to winning a title. At the time, this was led by Kareem Abdul-Jabar, who was famously known back then as Lew Alcindor.
In 1973, one of the four John Wooden’s teams won the national championship and remained undefeated. However, with a 30-0 score, UCLA made it with back-to-back titles after working exceptionally hard throughout the tournament to earn a 21-point win in the final while playing against Memphis.
It was here that the famous image was shot of John Wooden discussing with the UCLA players during the national championship game.
In 1956, Bill Russell, who is famously known as the Future Hall of Famer, led the San Francisco team into not only becoming the back-to-back champions of the season but also into running the table with a perfect record of 29-0. Images still trend in history books of Bill Russell and his San Francisco team celebrating their wins during this time.
In 1992, the Blue Devils felt they needed to set a new record after winning it all in the previous year. Here, they decided to go 34-2, but we can’t say that they didn’t get a bit of assistance from Christian Laettner’s Elite Eight during an overtime buzzer defeat against Kentucky.
In 1996, the first championship team belonging to Rick Pitino was stacked as they finished 34-2. It’s said that nine players of that team went on to play for the NBA, and this included five players from the first-round picks. This came after defeating UMass and Syracuse during the Final Four.
In 1976, Bob Knight’s Hoosiers started the season with a 20-point win while playing against No. 2 UCLA. They then ended the season with an 18-point win while playing against Michigan during the NCAA Tournament final. This was how they finished with a perfect 32-0 record.
Conclusion: These teams have made history for their outstanding performance during the NCAA Tournament. Each team has earned its right to be considered the best of all time. No matter how far back in time we look, these teams will always stand out as some of the greatest collegiate basketball champions of all time. Though it takes a special kind of dedication and hard work to achieve such a feat, these teams have time and time again proven that it’s possible to not only reach the top but also remain there. These teams are an inspiration for all aspiring athletes out there as they remind us of what can be achieved even in highly competitive environments. As long as you never give up on your dreams, you can be successful.