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Breaking Down the Bracket - Experience

I'm always interested in how much of the field has been there before. You can almost always look smart in your office pool after the first weekend just by picking the temas who have been there before. With that in mind, some numbers:

32 of the teams in this year's tournament were there last year, including:

  • The two teams in the title game (Florida and UCLA)
  • Two teams who lost in the Elite Eight (Texas and Villanova)
  • Five teams who bowed out in the Sweet Sixteen (Boston College, Duke, Georgetown, Gonzaga, and Memphis)
  • Ten teams who went home after the first weekend (Arizona, George Washington, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Tennessee and Texas A&M)
  • And thirteen teams who couldn't win a tourney game (Albany, Arkansas, Davidson, Kansas, Marquette, Michigan State, Nevada, Oral Roberts, Pennsylvania, Southern Illinois, Winthrop, Wisconsin, and Xavier)
Of those teams, there's a pretty equal number of squads moving up and down. 15 teams have improved on last year's seed:
  • Albany - 16th seed to a 13th
  • Davidson - 15th seed to a 13th
  • Florida - 3rd seed to the #1 (1st overall)
  • Georgetown - 7th seed to a 2nd
  • Kansas - 4th seed to a #1 (4th overall)
  • North Carolina - 3rd seed to a #1 (2nd overall)
  • Ohio State - 2nd seed to a #1 (1st overall)
  • Oral Roberts - 16th seed to a 14th
  • Pennsylvania - 15th seed to a 14th
  • Pittsburgh - 5th seed to a 3rd
  • Southern Illinois - 11th seed to a 4th
  • Texas A&M - 12th seed to a 3rd
  • Winthrop - 15th seed to an 11th
  • Wisconsin - 9th seed to a 2nd
  • Xavier - 14th seed to a 9th
While 14 are worse off than last year:
  • Arkansas - 8th seed to a 12th
  • Boston College - 4th seed to a 7th
  • Duke - #1 seed (1st overall) to a 6th
  • George Washington - 8th seed to an 11th
  • Gonzaga - 3rd seed to a 10th
  • Illinois - 4th seed to a 12th
  • Indiana - 6th seed to a 7th
  • Marquette - 7th seed to an 8th
  • Memphis - #1 seed (4th overall) to a 2nd
  • Michigan State - 6th seed to a 9th
  • Nevada - 5th seed to a 7th
  • Tennessee - 2nd seed to a 5th
  • Texas - 2nd seed to a 4th
  • Villanova - #1 seed (3rd overall) to 9th
And three teams, Arizona, Kentucky and UCLA, are the exact same seed two years running (8, 8, and 2 respectively).

And lastly, here are the teams riding multi-year tournament appearance streaks:

3 years running - George Washington, Pennsylvania, UCLA, Villanova and Winthrop

4 years running - Boston College, Nevada and North Carolina

6 years running - Pittsburgh and Southern Illinois

9 years running - Florida, Gonzaga, Texas and Wisconsin

10 years running - Michigan State

11 years running - Illinois

12 years running - Duke

16 years running - Kentucky

18 years running - Kansas

23 years running - Arizona