Only a few of teams have made it through March Madness and into the Final Four unscathed.
With the 2021 Gonzaga Bulldogs hoping to navigate March Madness to perfection, they must first survive the Final Four.
It has been well over a generation since a college basketball team did not lose a game in a season en route to a national title. The last team to pull it off was the 1976 Indiana Hoosiers coached by the iconic Bob Knight.
A few teams have been able to make it to the Final Four unscathed since the 1976 Hoosiers, but none have been able to do what they did.
Can the Bulldogs do the improbable?
March Madness: Undefeated Final Four teams since 1976 Indiana Hoosiers
- 1979 Indiana State Sycamores (Lost title game to Michigan State Spartans)
- 1991 UNLV Runnin’ Rebels (Lost in Final Four to Duke Blue Devils)
- 2015 Kentucky Wildcats (Lost in Final Four to Wisconsin Badgers)
- 2021 Gonzaga Bulldogs (???)
There have only been four teams since the 1976 Hoosiers to get to the Final Four without having suffered a loss.
Larry Bird’s 1979 Indiana State Sycamores nearly matched the Hoosiers, but too bad they ran into Magic Johnson’s Michigan State Spartans in one of the greatest national championship games in the history of college basketball. They went on to have a great NBA rivalry.
In their quest to repeat as national champions, Jerry Tarkanian’s 1991 UNLV Runnin’ Rebels ran into Christian Laettner, Grant Hill, Bobby Hurley and the rest of Mike Krzyzewski’s Duke Blue Devils. Duke went on to win its first national title in school history that season. Knocking off a West Coast juggernaut the caliber of UNLV helped catapult the Duke program to new heights.
And prior to Gonzaga making it to the 2021 Final Four, the last time an undefeated team had gotten this far was the 2015 Kentucky Wildcats. This was a team led by Karl-Anthony Towns and Devin Booker. Despite John Calipari’s most talented team in Lexington, they could not contain Frank Kaminsky, Sam Dekker and the rest of the Bo Ryan’s Wisconsin Badgers in the Final Four.
All that remains for Gonzaga is a win over UCLA on Saturday and over Baylor in the championship.
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