North Carolina People, Places, and Things-April 3
I am the dad to five adult children. As they were growing up I attempted to remind them they were special and to implore them to learn something new. My goal was to do that daily.
In 2016 my goal is to learn something new daily on the people, places, and things that make North Carolina special.
Watching the Final Four games last night and it made me wonder in the early years of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament how many teams from North Carolina advanced to that point in the tournament.
First off the Final Four can be traced back to 1939.In that first Final Four the teams included Oregon, Ohio State, Oklahoma, and Villanova. Ironically in 2016 Oklahoma and Villanova return again.
The first team to ever get to the Final Four was North Carolina and they did that in 1946. The next team to get that far was NC State in 1950. The first team to win a NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship was North Carolina in 1957.
Photo below of the 1957 UNC team. Pretty interesting only 10 players and of course no one of color on team.
The fourth team from North Carolina to advance to the Final Four was Wake Forest in 1962. Duke became the fifth school to get that far in 1963 and they repeated in 1964 to gain that distinction of back to back appearances for a team from North Carolina.
The 1964 season was the year that UCLA won their first NCAA crown over Duke. It would not be their last.
From 1962 moving forward teams from North Carolina started to make regular appearances in the Final Four. In the last 54 years 37 teams from the state have advanced to the final four. One of those teams was UNC Charlotte in 1977. Charlotte and Wake Forest have only been to the Final Four once. UNC-Nc State-Duke multiple times.