Biggest Upsets in March Madness History


The NCAA Tournament annually gives us that one shining moment, when the national champions of college basketball are crowned and get to cut down the nets. But what puts the madness in March Madness are the surprises, the bracket busters, the Cinderella moments.

Here is a look at the biggest upsets in NCAA Tournament history:

No. 11 George Mason 86, No. 1 UConn 84, Elite Eight, 2006

George Mason, out of the Colonial Atheltic Association, became the second double-digit seed in history -- and, more importantly, the first from a "mid-major" conference --  to reach the Final Four, and they did in by knocking off a powerhouse UConn team in overtime. The miracle run was so memorable, it’s become a talking point for analysts to ask “Who will be this year’s George Mason?”

No. 11 Virginia Commonwealth 71, No. 1 Kansas 61, Elite Eight, 2011

VCU, which came all the way out of the First Four (when the field of 68 teams is whittled to 64), used hotshot coach Shaka Smart's "havoc" defense to open up a stunning 17-point lead in the first half against the top seed. The Rams became the third No. 11 seed to advance to the Final Four.

No. 15 Florida Gulf Coast 78, No. 2 Georgetown 68, First Round, 2013

Eight 15-seeds have beaten a 2-seed in March Madness, but the most impressive was Florida Gulf Coast -- better known as “Dunk City.” They leaped over a helpless Georgetown team, with style, and went on to reach the Sweet 16.

No. 16 UMBC 74, No. 1 Virginia 54, First Round, 2018

Never before had a No. 16 seed toppled a No. 1 seed. But one of the most memorable upsets in sports history doesn't have a signature moment: UMBC, which entered the game as 20.5 point underdogs, simply outplayed Virginia is every way and won by 20.

No. 8 Villanova 66, No. 1 Georgetown 64, National Championship, 1985

Georgetown, led by future NBA star Patrick Ewing, was the defending national champion and boasted the nation’s top defense. Villanova needed a miracle to defeat the Hoyas and conjured just that, shooting 79 percent and missing only one shot from the field in the second half.