March Madness: The history of No. 1 seed vs. No. 16 seed games

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No. 16 Gardner-Webb gave No. 1 Virginia a scare by almost knocking them out of the tournament. Here is an abbreviated history of 1-seed vs. 16-seed games in the NCAA tournament via NCAA.org.

<p>North Carolina almost slipped to an Iona upset in the first round of the 2019 tournament. Iona had a 38-35 lead at halftime, but UNC pulled it together by the second half to win 88-73. </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

North Carolina almost slipped to an Iona upset in the first round of the 2019 tournament. Iona had a 38-35 lead at halftime, but UNC pulled it together by the second half to win 88-73.

<p>No. 16 seed North Dakota State stormed out in the first half, but could not keep up with with the Duke’s defense. NDSU’s Vinnie Shahid had a brilliant performance, but was not able to shake Zion Williamson and the Blue Devils. </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

No. 16 seed North Dakota State stormed out in the first half, but could not keep up with with the Duke’s defense. NDSU’s Vinnie Shahid had a brilliant performance, but was not able to shake Zion Williamson and the Blue Devils.

<p>Gardner-Webb almost shook up no. 1 seed Virginia in the first round of the 2019 tournament. The Cavaliers rallied in the second half to prevent a potential upset. </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

Gardner-Webb almost shook up no. 1 seed Virginia in the first round of the 2019 tournament. The Cavaliers rallied in the second half to prevent a potential upset.

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<p>The University of Maryland, Baltimore County Retrievers made sports history in 2018 by becoming the first No. 16 seed team to beat a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. No. 16 UMBC shocked the sports world by beating No. 1 Virginia. </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County Retrievers made sports history in 2018 by becoming the first No. 16 seed team to beat a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. No. 16 UMBC shocked the sports world by beating No. 1 Virginia.

<p>No. 16 seeds had seriously threatened top seeds previously. There were two occasions of one-point losses, and both games were in the 1989 tournament. The first was Princeton falling to Georgetown 50-49.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

No. 16 seeds had seriously threatened top seeds previously. There were two occasions of one-point losses, and both games were in the 1989 tournament. The first was Princeton falling to Georgetown 50-49.
-NCAA.org

<p>The second game was Oklahoma’s 72-71 win over ETSU.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

The second game was Oklahoma’s 72-71 win over ETSU.
-NCAA.org

<p>In the past 11 years, 13 games of this matchup have been decided by 30 or more points. Only four have been decided by 10 or less.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

In the past 11 years, 13 games of this matchup have been decided by 30 or more points. Only four have been decided by 10 or less.
-NCAA.org

<p>The year of the biggest blowouts took place nine years later in 1998, when the average margin was 42.25 points thanks to wins of 88-52, 99-60, 99-63 and 110-52.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

The year of the biggest blowouts took place nine years later in 1998, when the average margin was 42.25 points thanks to wins of 88-52, 99-60, 99-63 and 110-52.
-NCAA.org

<p>Only 15 games have been decided by less than 10 points, the most recent one in 2014: Arizona’s 68-59 win over Weber State.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

Only 15 games have been decided by less than 10 points, the most recent one in 2014: Arizona’s 68-59 win over Weber State.
-NCAA.org

<p>On the other side of the coin, the biggest blowout in the matchup’s history was in 1998, when Kansas bullied Prairie View for a 110-52 win. That 58-point margin remains the largest in any tournament game since the tournament expanded in 1985.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

On the other side of the coin, the biggest blowout in the matchup’s history was in 1998, when Kansas bullied Prairie View for a 110-52 win. That 58-point margin remains the largest in any tournament game since the tournament expanded in 1985.
-NCAA.org

<p>The closest any one tournament has been for 1-16 games was 1989, when those two games were decided by one point, and the margin of victory for the 1 seed was just 10.5 points over the four games.<br>-NCAA.org </p>
History of the 1 vs. 16 seeds

The closest any one tournament has been for 1-16 games was 1989, when those two games were decided by one point, and the margin of victory for the 1 seed was just 10.5 points over the four games.
-NCAA.org

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