Saturday, February 18, 2006

Big Ten Basketball and National Champions

Did you know the Big Ten has only won a single national title in men's basketball over the past 15 years? Michigan State in 2000. Here's a rundown of national champs by current conference since 1980.

ACC (8) - 2005 UNC, 2002 Maryland, 2001 Duke, 1993 UNC, 1992 Duke, 1991 Duke, 1983 NC State, 1982 UNC

Big East (7) - 2004 UConn, 2003 Syracuse, 1999 UConn, 1986 Louisville, 1985 Villanova, 1984 Georgetown, 1980 Louisville

Big Ten (4) - 2000 Michigan State, 1989 Michigan, 1987 Indiana, 1981 Indiana

Big Twelve (1) - 1988 Kansas

Pac Ten (2) - 1997 Arizona, 1995 UCLA

SEC (3) - 1998 Kentucky, 1996 Kentucky, 1994 Arkansas

The lone national title from outside the 6 football power conferences was UNLV in 1990. And yes, I realize that schools like Louisville were not in their current conference when they won the national title.


But anyways, back to the Big Ten. Only 3 national titles in the past 25 years. How about # of final four participants over that time stretch (including champs)?

ACC - 26
Big East - 20
Big Ten - 18 (including 2 later vacated by Michigan)
Big Twelve - 11
Pac Ten - 7
SEC - 14

Big Ten stacks up pretty well, but the number of national champs is just lagging a big too much for my taste, especially recently. 1 title since 1989? That's pretty weak. No Big Ten team is looking like a title contender this year, but with the sheer volume of mega-talent en route to the Big Ten I expect it should pick up in the near future.

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