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All of the times the UConn men and women reached Final Four in same year

There’s a pretty good reason why Storrs, Connecticut has become known as the basketball capital of the world. If anyone in the college hoops universe had forgotten about it, they were swiftly reminded this weekend, when both the UConn men and women punched their tickets to the Final Four.

It’s the fifth time overall that both Huskies programs have reached the Final Four in the same year. No other program has accomplished that feat more than once, and it’s only happened eight other times in history— Georgia (1983), Duke (1999), Oklahoma (2002), Texas (2003), Michigan State (2005), LSU (2006), Louisville (2013), Syracuse (2016) and NC State, which joined UConn with both programs in this year’s Final Four.

Here’s a look back at all of the Huskies’ dual Final Four appearances, and how they fared each time:

2004

UConn men: Won national championship

UConn women: Won national championship

The year began with Emeka Okafor and Diana Taurasi sharing the cover of Sports Illustrated, and it ended just as the magazine had predicted in the preseason– with both cutting down the nets. The UConn men stormed to the Final Four on the strength of four blowout victories, then earned a memorable, stirring comeback win over Duke, 79-78 in the national semifinals. The Huskies coasted to an 82-73 victory over Georgia Tech to take home the title, the fourth in program history. Okafor was named Final Four Most Oustanding Player, while Ben Gordon and Rashad Anderson joined them on the All-Tournament team.

Like the men, the women entered the NCAA Tournament as a No. 2 seed– the first time in six years they hadn’t been a No. 1 going into the Dance. It may have only served as a chip on their shoulders, as the Huskies cruised past Penn and Auburn in their first two games, then successfully dodged a Cinderella in No. 11 UC-Santa Barbara, 63-57, in the Sweet 16. The Huskies outclassed Minnesota in the national semis in New Orleans, and outlasted old rival Tennessee, 70-61, in the title game. Taurasi was named Most Outstanding Player, and she was joined by Jessica Moore and Ann Strother on the All-Tournament team.

Dom Amore: In triumph of coaching and spirit, UConn women return to Final Four

2009

UConn men: Lost in national semifinals

UConn women: Won national championship

The men had cut down the nets in each of their first two appearances in the Final Four, but the third time proved to be the charm for opponents, as Draymond Green and Michigan State sent a freshman Kemba Walker, A.J. Price and Hasheem Thabeet home, 82-73. The fact that the Spartans were virtually playing at home didn’t help the Huskies, as the game was played at Ford Field in Detroit.

The women, led by Tina Charles, Maya Moore and Renee Montgomery, had a much easier time as they cruised to the Final Four in St. Louis. The Huskies put it in cruise control as they coasted past Stanford, 83-64, and Louisville, 76-54 to win it all. Charles was named Final Four Most Outstanding Player as she scored 25 points and grabbed 19 rebounds in the title game.

2011

UConn men: Won national championship

UConn women: Lost in national semifinals

It was another magical year for the UConn men as Kemba Walker, Jeremy Lamb, Shabazz Napier and Co. embarked on the first of two out-of-nowhere national title runs the program would see in a span of four years. This one began at the Big East tournament, where the ninth-place Huskies won five games in five days at Madison Square Garden to take home the title (you definitely remember that Kemba stepback). UConn then knocked off Bucknell, Cincinnati, Kawhi Leonard’s San Diego State squad, and Arizona to reach the Final Four in Houston. They edged John Calipari and Kentucky 56-55 in the national semis before out-uglying Butler, 53-41 in the national title game. Walker was of course named Final Four Most Oustanding Player, and Lamb was also named to the All-Tournament team.

Led by Maya Moore, Tiffany Hayes, Stefanie Dolson and Bria Hartley, the women reached the Final Four for the fourth straight year, but they were upended by Skylar Diggins and Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish sent the Huskies home, 72-63, in the national semifinals.


2014

UConn men: Won national championship

UConn women: Won national championship

You may have heard that in 2014, both the UConn men’s and women’s basketball programs won the national championship. It’s often cited on social media, and it was the second time it had happened– no other program in the country has done it once. The men, led by Shabazz Napier, went on one of the most incredible runs in NCAA Tournament history as a No. 7 seed– knocking out St. Joseph’s, Villanova, Iowa State and Michigan State– the last two at MSG– en route to another Final Four. There, they bounced tournament overall No. 1 seed Florida, 63-53, and sent Calipari and Kentucky home again, this time in the national title game, 60-54. Napier was Final Four Most Outstanding Player, and DeAndre Daniels and Ryan Boatright joined him on the All-Tournament team.

Unlike on the men’s side, there was no doubt who the best team in women’s college hoops was in 2014. A sophomore Breanna Stewart made the leap to college superstar, and a stacked UConn roster that included Bria Hartley, Stefanie Dolson, Moriah Jefferson, Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, Morgan Tuck and Kiah Stokes combined to lead the team to a perfect 40-0 season. UConn rolled past Stanford, 75-56, and Notre Dame, 79-58, to capture the program’s second straight title and ninth overall.

Social media reacts as UConn women’s basketball reaches Final Four for 23rd time