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The Greatest UNC Team Bracket: Elite Eight

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Eight of the best teams in Tar Heels history are left standing.

NCAA Basketball: Final Four Championship Game-Gonzaga vs North Carolina Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

We are getting down to the nitty gritty in our bracket to crown the greatest North Carolina Tar Heels men’s basketball team.

Of the eight teams left standing, all eight advanced all the way to the national championship game in real life. All six of UNC’s NCAA Tournament championship teams are left standing, while two teams that came incredibly close have also made it.

Not that there haven’t been tough choices earlier in this tournament, but you’re going to have to make some really difficult one now. Here are four Elite Eight matchups for you to vote in!

Elite Eight

Dean Smith Region

#1. 1956-57 vs. #3. 1976-77

1956-57

Record: 32-0 (14-0 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Champions

Best Win: 3/23/57 - 54-53 (3OT) vs. #2 Kansas

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #1

Frank McGuire’s undefeated championship team faced a semi-tough task, but eventually won it’s Sweet 16 matchup with 66% of the vote against ‘94-95.

1976-77

Record: 28-5 (9-3 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Runners-Up

Best Win: 3/26/77 - 84-84 vs. #4 UNLV

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #3

The Phil Ford led team won a battle of Dean Smith’s first two teams to appear in the national championship game when it got 74% against ‘67-68.

Poll

Who was better?

This poll is closed

  • 78%
    #1. 1956-57
    (473 votes)
  • 21%
    #3. 1976-77
    (133 votes)
606 votes total Vote Now

Norman Shepard Region

#1. 1992-93 vs. #2. 2004-05

1992-93

Record: 34-4 (14-2 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Champions

Best Win: 4/5/93 - 77-71 vs. #3 Michigan

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #1

Smith’s second national championship won fairly easily against the Final Four-appearing ‘97-98 squad.

2004-05

Record: 33-4 (14-2 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Champions

Best Win: 4/4/05 - 75-70 vs. #1 Illinois

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #2

Here we have our first all-national championship matchup of the tournament. Roy Williams’ first title team cruised past ‘07-08 to set up this massive Elite Eight clash.

Poll

Who was better?

This poll is closed

  • 37%
    #1. 1992-93
    (249 votes)
  • 62%
    #2. 2004-05
    (408 votes)
657 votes total Vote Now

Roy Williams Region

#1. 1981-82 vs. #3. 2015-16

1981-82

Record: 32-2 (12-2 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Champions

Best Win: 3/29/82 - 63-63 vs. #6 Georgetown

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #1

Smith, James Worthy, Michael Jordan and company won the biggest blowout of the Sweet 16, getting all but two votes in a win over ‘71-72.

2015-16

Record: 33-7 (14-4 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Runners-Up

Best Win: 3/12/16 - 61-57 vs. #4 Virginia

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #1

This matchup features two of the more iconic shots in UNC history, with this team producing Marcus Paige’s one. (Don’t ask what happened after that.)

Poll

Who was better?

This poll is closed

  • 91%
    #1. 1981-82
    (608 votes)
  • 8%
    #3. 2015-16
    (56 votes)
664 votes total Vote Now

Frank McGuire Region

#1. 2008-09 vs. #2. 2016-17

2008-09

Record: 34-4 (13-3 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Champions

Best Win: 4/6/09 - 89-72 vs. #8 Michigan State

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #1

This Tyler Hansborough, Ty Lawson, and Wayne Ellington led squad handily beat Smith’s final team from ‘96-97, getting 97% of the vote.

2016-17

Record: 33-7 (14-4 ACC)

NCAA Tournament Finish: National Champions

Best Win: 4/3/17 - 71-65 vs. #2 Gonzaga

AP Poll Peak Ranking: #3

Here we have another all-national championship matchup, and the two most recent UNC teams to do to boot. Williams’ third title beat the ‘81-82 national runners up to set up this battle.

Poll

Who was better?

This poll is closed

  • 91%
    #1. 2008-09
    (617 votes)
  • 8%
    #2. 2016-17
    (55 votes)
672 votes total Vote Now