Greatest Moments of March Madness Quiz


By: Raj Chander

7 Min Quiz

Image: Wiki Commons by Keenan Hairston from Raleigh

About This Quiz

There is truly nothing else like the NCAA Tournament in all professional sports. First, the obvious difference — many other championships, especially at the professional level, take place in a best-of-7 series. While these formats allow the team that is better ultimately to come up victorious more often than not, they are also fairly predictable, especially in the early stages.

Not so with March Madness. Just ask last year's UVA team that was stunned in the first round by an underdog 16-seed. Or this past season's Duke Blue Devils, who were gifted with one of the best prospects in a generation, only to lose to a team that seemed to have more questions than star players.

The rivalries, the history, the buzzer-beaters ... they happen throughout the NCAA season, but there seems to be an extra mystique surrounding them when they take place under the bright lights of March Madness. You might remember some of the biggest games involving your favorite team, but how is your knowledge of the tournament on a broad scale? To find out, see how many questions you can get right on this quiz, which revisits some of the best memories in NCAA Championship history. Best of luck — they don't call it "madness" for nothing!

With seconds left in the 2011 Big East Quarterfinals against Pitt, Kemba Walker pulled up from the top of the key, draining a two-pointer in Madison Square Garden to send his team to the next round. Who did he play for?

The shot was just one highlight of a memorable postseason run for the Huskies, who went on to win a National Championship that same year. They would go on to win another title in 2014 but haven't made it past the second round since.


The Retrievers, as they are known, made basketball history in March 2018 by becoming the first 16-seed to beat a 1-seed, stunning a dominant UVA team. What school did these famous underdogs play for?

Although it made for a nice story, UMBC's run didn't have much longevity — they were dispatched in the next round by Kansas. As for UVA, they would go on to recover from the heartbreaking loss in the best possible way — coming back the next year and winning the National Championship.


With assistance from their spiritual leader, team chaplain Sister Jean, the Loyola University of Chicago Ramblers took down Kansas State in 2018 to make the school's first Final Four in how many years?

The small school was known for two things: teamwork and defense on the court, and the support of its lovable cheerleader Sister Jean. The now 99-year-old Jean enjoyed a viral moment during the 2018 tournament, even inspiring her own bobblehead.


As a small school in Richmond, Virginia, VCU had made the tournament several times but never really went anywhere until 2011. Who did they beat that year to reach the team's first-ever Final Four?

The 2011 Rams would go on to fall to Butler in the Final Four, but the team had already made their mark in history. VCU's squad became just the third 11-seed in NCAA history to make the Final Four, and coach Shaka Smart went on to coach at Texas.


The Tar Heels have had many great squads, but few as dominant as their 2009 incarnation, led by Tyler Hansbrough. How many players from this legendary championship squad were drafted into the NBA?

Tyler Hansbrough, Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington, Danny Green, Ed Davis, and Tyler Zeller all spent some time in the NBA. Hansbrough and Lawson both now play in the Chinese Basketball Association, while the other four have had varying levels of success in the league.


In a second-round game against Indiana, future hall-of-fame big man Shaquille O'Neal announced his presence to the world, dominating the game with 36 points, 12 rebounds and five blocks. Which team did he play for?

This March Madness game would actually be Shaq's last in college, as his team was eliminated and he declared for the 1992 NBA Draft. In his only other game in the first round, Shaq dropped another triple-double, with 26 points, 11 blocks and 13 rebounds.


A commuter school just outside the District of Columbia, George Mason University had never been past the tournament's first round until 2006, when they reached the Final Four. Which perennial powerhouse did they stun to get there?

The Huskies were especially dominant that year, coming into the tournament as a #1 overall seed led by future NBA All-Rookie Rudy Gay. George Mason hasn't been anywhere close to the Final Four since, last appearing in the tournament in 2011.


The dominant 1990 Runnin' Rebels set a record for largest margin of victory in an NCAA Tournament championship game, crushing Duke by 30 points. Who was their coach?

Nicknamed "Tark the Shark," Tarkanian headed up a stacked team that included future NBA mainstays Larry Johnson and Greg Anthony. He's remembered for stirring up controversy by recruiting flashy, urban players who were willing to work hard in his system.


In a matchup of big men, 7'6" UCF center Tacko Fall took on college phenom Zion Williamson in the second round, with Zion's team squeaking out a 77-76 win after UCF's last-minute shot rolled out. Which team did Zion Williamson play for?

Though his pro career hasn't started yet, Zion is considered one of the most promising prospects of his generation. He made headlines in February 2019 for splitting open his shoe, leading to a knee injury that sidelined him until the NCAA postseason.


After 78 years without making the tournament, the Northwestern University Wildcats were finally selected as a #8 seed, becoming the final member of a major conference to reach the tournament. What year did they go dancing?

Not only did Northwestern make the tournament, they actually won their first game over the Vanderbilt Commodores. The North Dakota Fighting Hawks and Jacksonville State Gamecocks also appeared in the tournament for the first time in 2017.


In 1991, Michigan's Fab Five was considered one of the best recruiting classes of all time, but they famously lost their best chance at a title in 1993 when Chris Webber's mistake caused a technical foul. What was Webber's error?

Webber claims he thought the team had a timeout, but then-teammate Jalen Rose told the media that they had just discussed how they used their last one in the huddle. Despite going on to a successful NBA career and subsequent announcer role, Webber has never publicly spoken about the timeout incident.


Despite losing to Duke in the ACC Tournament, the UNC Tar Heels topped college basketball titans including Kentucky and Butler en route to a championship win over Gonzaga in what year?

Although Carolina fans were thrilled, at the time of the game, many people criticized it for the slow place and spotty officiating. Even UNC coach Roy Williams said after that "neither team played very well."


One-and-done college stars Zion Williamson and RJ Barrett of Duke had their 2019 seasons end in the Elite Eight. Which squad did they lose to?

The game was tight, but forward Kenny Goins made the difference, hitting a go-ahead three-pointer with 34 seconds left. It was the first time the Spartans made the Final Four since 2015.


Villanova was a respectable 6-seed going into the second round of the 2019 tournament until they ran into a buzzsaw of a guard on the Purdue Boilermakers who dropped 9 three-pointers on them. Who was the player?

Edwards would go on to continue his hot shooting streak, dropping an insane 28 three-pointers in the entire Purdue tournament run. He also broke Steph Curry's record for most points through the first four games of the tournament with 139.


With just over 20 seconds left in the 1998 Sweet 16, Washington was beating powerhouse UConn by one point. Which future NBA champion with the Detroit Pistons hit a famous dagger to take UConn to the Elite Eight?

The UConn Huskies would go on to lose to a dominant UNC team in the regional final round. However, Rip returned the following year triumphantly, leading UConn to their first-ever National Championship in 1999.


Barely over two seconds remained in a 1992 Elite Eight game when future Dream Team member Christian Laettner hit a stunning buzzer-beater to send his team to the Final Four. Where did Laettner play?

Laettner didn't miss a single shot the entire game, going a perfect 10-10 from the field and 10-10 from the free-throw line. Duke would go on to take down Michigan on the way to the school's second consecutive title.


The legendary rivalry of Magic Johnson vs. Larry Bird started long before the Celtics and the Lakers. In what year did these two hoop legends meet in the NCAA Tournament championship game?

Magic dropped 24 while Larry Legend scored 19, but Michigan State ultimately took home the title with a 75-64 win. Bird got his revenge a few years later in 1984 when his Boston Celtics topped Magic's Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Championship.


In 1982, Michael Jordan wasn't yet a household name. He was a freshman playing in the NCAA National Championship game, where he hit a go-ahead bucket with 15 seconds left to seal one of many UNC titles. Who did the Tar Heels beat that year?

Jordan is now widely considered the GOAT, but back in '82, his teammate James Worthy was a bigger name. His 28 points propelled UNC in the title game, and he ended up taking home the Most Outstanding Player Award.


The triple-double, which means double digits in three different stat categories, is common in the pros but happens rarely in the NCAA. Before Ja Morant did it in the 2019 dance, which Michigan State forward, who now stars in Golden State, put up the last triple-double in the NCAA tournament?

Draymond actually put up two triple doubles in consecutive years of the tournament. His first came in 2011 in the second round against the UCLA Bruins, while his second was in 2012 against LIU Brooklyn.


He never won an NBA title, but at least Patrick Ewing got to taste a championship in 1984 when his college team knocked off the Houston Cougars to win the school's first-ever NCAA Championship. Where did he play?

In a hard-fought title game, Ewing and his Hoyas outlasted fellow college star Hakeem Olajuwon. Both men would end up as star centers in the NBA and both would eventually get enshrined in the Hall of Fame in the same year, 2008.


Jimmer Fredette never made much of a name in the pros, but he set the college world on fire for a time. On March 18, 2010, Jimmer poured in 37 points for BYU to stun their opponents in a double-overtime barn burner during the tournament's first round. Which basketball powerhouse did his team beat?

While BYU never won the entire thing, they enjoyed some of their greatest seasons while the sharpshooting Fredette was on campus. It's safe to say the school won't see another player like him anytime soon. Jimmer left college with the school records for most points, three-pointers, field goals, and free throws in both a single season and all-time.


He's more known now for his GM roles, but Danny Ferry was quite the college player for Duke in the late 1980s. Despite Ferry scoring 34 points and grabbing 10 rebounds, which small Big East school stunned the Blue Devils to make the 1989 championship?

Of his 34 points, Ferry scored just 14 in the second half, while the Pirates shot 71% from the field on the way to clinching the game. Ferry went on to serve as General Manager of both the Cleveland Cavaliers and Atlanta Hawks in the NBA.


Before going on to a noteworthy NBA career with the Warriors and Pacers, Chris Mullin helped St. John's defeat Kentucky in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Tournament in what year?

Mullin put up a dominant performance, scoring a game-high 30 points along with 10 rebounds and seven assists. He went on to play for the United States Olympic basketball team as part of the famous "dream team" of 1992.


In 1983, underdog NC State was in the national championship game against a feared Houston team headlined by the duo of Akeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler, known as "Phi Slama Jama" for their explosive play. Which Wolfpack forward slammed home a teammate's rebound to seal the upset championship for NC State?

The play ended up becoming a historical moment of March Madness, as did Charles' team — the 1983 NC State Wolfpack was the first team to win a title after losing ten games in a season. Sadly, Charles passed away in 2011 in a bus accident in North Carolina.


Before he was a Laker legend known for his gigantic stature and graceful skyhook, this college center powered his team to the 1969 NCAA Championship over Purdue. Who is this player who converted to Islam and changed to his famous name soon after?

Abdul-Jabbar dominated college basketball so thoroughly that there was a time period between 1967 and 1976 when the slam dunk was banned, mostly due to his dominance at the move. The rule preventing players from dunking was appropriately nicknamed, "The Lew Alcindor Rule."


In 2008, the Kansas Jayhawks were in a tight battle for the national championship against the Memphis Tigers. With the game tied on the last play of regulation, Kansas guard Mario Chalmers drilled a three-pointer to tie the game and send his team to overtime, where they'd eventually win the title. Chalmers would also win two titles in the NBA — what pro team did he get his championships with?

The shot would go down in Kansas history as "Mario's Miracle," and is still considered a highlight of college basketball history. Though he's no longer in the league, Chalmers added a third type of championship to his resume, winning the 2019 Basketball Champions League title with Italian club Virtus Bologna.


In 1981, Kansas State was tied with their opponents in a tough second-round game, with only eight seconds left on the clock. Senior and leading scorer Rolando Blackman received the ball, cleared space, and nailed a 16-footer to send his team to the next round — which team did Blackman's shot beat?

The Wildcats went on to win their next game as well, sending Kansas State to the Elite Eight. Unfortunately, they ran up against a UNC team headlined by future NBA stars Sam Perkins and James Worthy, losing by double digits.


Competing against a powerhouse North Carolina team in the 2016 NCAA Championship, Villanova had let a ten-point lead evaporate — the game was tied with 4.7 seconds left. Which Villanova forward hit a fairy-tale buzzer-beater from the top of the arc to seal the school's second title?

With one shot, Jenkins helped Villanova capture their first title in over 30 years. The Wildcats would go on to repeat as champions just two years later in 2018, defeating Michigan in that year's final.


In the second round of the 2012 tournament, Duke was matched up with the lowly 15-seed Lehigh Mountain Hawks. But the birds had future pro CJ McCollum on their side — in a masterful performance, McCollum put up 30 points, six assists and six rebounds on the way to a stunning upset. Where does McCollum play in the NBA?

McCollum's squad lost in the next round to Xavier, but the 2012 upset is one of the signature moments in the school's basketball history. In fact, CJ McCollum is still the only player from the school ever to get drafted into the NBA.


UCLA went on a miraculous title run in 1995 after almost losing in the round of 32. Senior Tyus Edney could not be denied, scoring a last-second bank shot to save his Bruins from elimination. Which team did they beat?

Perhaps inspired by their come-from-behind win, the Bruins went on to beat a few impressive teams on their run to the championship, including a UConn Huskies team with Ray Allen. But nothing will ever come close to their run under John Wooden, winning 10 NCAA titles in 12 years.


Just a year after the Bruins won the title in 1995, an Ivy League school using an innovative approach to offense stunned the defending champs in the opening round. Which team topped the Bruins in the 1996 opening round of the tournament?

The Princeton Offense, as it came to be known, involved lots of cutting, passing and teamwork. NBA teams that have famously run the Princeton Offense include the Los Angeles Lakers and the Washington Wizards.


Jimmer Fredette wasn't done after a phenomenal 2010 tournament performance. In 2011, he led the BYU Cougars to their first Sweet 16 in 30 years, dropping 34 points on seven three-pointers. Which powerhouse team did his Cougars defeat in the 2011 round of 32?

Jimmer's team played Florida's Gators next in the 2011 Sweet 16, a rematch against the team whose tournament they had ended last year. Though the game went to OT and Jimmer put up 32 points in what would be his final game as a Bulldog, Florida ultimately got revenge and won the game.


Although Kansas' 2010 team was stocked with future NBA talents, a little-known Northern Iowa Panthers team disregarded the Jayhawks' reputation, beating them by two points in one of the most shocking upsets in recent tournament history. Which set of twin brothers on that 2010 Kansas team now plays in the NBA?

The Morris twins both played three seasons at Kansas, entering the NBA Draft in 2011. They ended up getting picked back-to-back as the 13th and 14th picks in that year's draft.


After shocking their opponent with a 10-point comeback in just one minute earlier that year, in the 2001 Final Four Duke again came back against the same team, overcoming a 22-point hole to make it to the championship round against Arizona. Which team did they beat?

These two teams were some of the greatest in both teams' respective histories, with Maryland playing Juan Dixon and future NBA star Steve Blake and Duke starting school legends Grant Hill and Mike Dunleavy, Jr.


It was a painful moment in Butler history. In the 2010 NCAA championship, the Bulldogs were down by two with three seconds left against a tough Duke team. A Butler wing launched a shot that bounced off the backboard and the rim but couldn't quite connect. Who was the star player for Butler that year, who went on to play in the NBA for both the Utah Jazz and Boston Celtics?

Had Hayward's shot went in, it would have been ranked right up there with shots by Kris Jenkins and other exciting buzzer beaters on this list. Fortunately, karma repaid Butler the next year in 2011, when Matt Howard's last-second tip-in helped the Bulldogs beat Old Dominion in the second round.


The Syracuse Orange had been experiencing an up-and-down 2003 season. In the tournament semifinal against Texas, future NBA star Carmelo Anthony went on a tear, dropping 33 points and collecting 14 boards. Which NBA team drafted Carmelo later that year?

Carmelo obliterated the competition in the 2003 tournament, winning the Most Outstanding Player. This performance against Texas set the record for most points ever scored by a freshman in a Final Four game.


In a battle of future NBA stars, the California Golden Bears were matched up against a strong Duke team in the second round of the 1993 NCAA Tournament. With 11 points, 14 assists and eight rebounds, which star Cal point guard and future NBA legend helped his team secure the upset?

Duke's Grant Hill, who played against Kidd in this game, would also go on to become a star player in the NBA. Kidd went on to coach the Brooklyn (then New Jersey) Nets and Milwaukee Bucks, while Hill is now part-owner of the Atlanta Hawks.


In the 1992 second round, underdog Georgia Tech was up against one of the better teams in the country. Thanks to a historic buzzer beater by James Forrest, with less than a second left, which team did the Yellow Jackets topple in that game?

As unique as the shot seemed, Forrest actually hit a similar buzzer beater the next season. Though it was only a regular season game, Forrest hit a three at the buzzer in December of 1992 to beat the Louisville Cardinals in the first game ever played at the Georgia Dome.


In 1970, Notre Dame legend Austin Carr set a record unlikely to be broken, scoring 61 points in an NCAA tournament matchup against Ohio University. Which NBA team did Carr go on to play most of his career with, eventually serving as a signature broadcaster?

Carr not only has the highest-scoring game in tournament history, but he is also responsible for three of the five highest-scoring games. These days, he's best known for his catchphrases on TV, including "From deep in the Q!" for long three-pointers.


Before serving as the glue guy for the Golden State Warriors, which fiesty forward put up triple doubles in the NCAA tournament in two straight seasons, 2011 and 2012?

Greens's triple-double in the 2012 NCAA tournament was only the eighth ever in March Madness. In college basketball history, Green is the only player besides Magic Johnson and Oscar Robertson to ever record two triple-doubles in an NCAA tournament game.


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