It’s that time of the year when college basketball fans look forward with anticipation as their favorite teams compete for a chance to play in the big dance. Coined March Madness, the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball Tournament is a single elimination competition pitting champions from 32 Division 1 conferences and 36 at- large teams invited to the event based on their performance during the regular season.
What you get are five weeks of some of the most exciting basketball during the year as every bucket and defensive possession become a do-or-die scenario for teams to move forward to the crowning event, the national championship game. Since 1939, the Big Dance has been the stage for some of the most dramatic finishes, upsets and competitive feats within the sport of basketball, or for that matter, the entire cavalcade of sports.
Who can forget the breathtaking run by Jimmy Valvano’s North Carolina State Wolfpack in 1983 to defeat Guy Lewis and his University of Houston Cougars, nicknamed Phi Slamma Jamma, and led by future NBA Hall of Fame stars Clyde Drexler and Hakeem Olajuwon. It truly was a remarkable feat and illustrates the allure of March Madness. Any team can get hot and make a run like the 1997 Arizona Wildcats coached by Lute Olson. A number 4 seed in the Southeast Region, the Wildcats ran the table to beat tournament favorite Kentucky at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis.
Although there are incredible runs, for the most part though teams favored to win often do. In many instances, they do encounter challenges such as the 4.8 second dash by Tyus Edney against Missouri in 1995 to propel the UCLA Bruins onward where they would eventually beat the Arkansas Razorbacks in the national championship game. These dominant teams are often comprised of incredible athletes and some of the greatest coaches the game has ever seen.
Yes, there are many good, even great, college basketball coaches, many of whom have never won a national championship. However, there are those coaches who are part of an elite fraternity where they have won multiple national championships. They are on a pinnacle where many coaches aspire to be.
Here is a list of coaches who have climbed to that pinnacle by winning multiple national championships. The list is presented in order of wins.
1 John Wooden – UCLA Bruins
John Wooden – UCLA Bruins
National Championships – 10
Years Won - 1964, 1965, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975
Called the Wizard of Westwood, John Wooden led his UCLA teams to 10 national championships, including a record number 7 in a row.