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Who is the lowest seed to advance to the Final Four, win the national championship

No. 8 Villanova holds the record for lowest seed to win a men’s basketball national championship. We break down some other low seeds that have advanced deep in the tournament.

Villanova basketball player Dwayne McClain drives for a layup against Georgetown basketball player Patrick Ewing.

UPDATE: No. 11 UCLA upset No. 1 Michigan in the Elite Eight to became the fifth team seeded 11th to reach the Final Four.

The 2021 NCAA Tournament has seen some huge upsets, with double digit seeds running roughshod over heavy favorites in the first round. Oral Roberts became the ninth No. 15 seed to advance out of the first round, and for the first time ever, four teams seeded 13 or worse advanced to the second round.

We’re guaranteed at least one double digit seed in the Sweet 16 with No. 11 UCLA facing No. 14 Abilene Christian. Beyond that, it’s a tough call how many Cinderellas we’ll get crashing the second weekend. No. 12 Oregon State and No. 11 Syracuse both looked great in the first round, but can they carry it over with a step up in competition?

Things get that much more difficult heading into the second weekend, but we’ve seen some double digit seeds getting even further. No. 12 seed Missouri advanced to the Elite Eight in 2002, and since then we’ve seen several No. 10 and No. 11 seeds crash the party. We have yet to see a 13 or worse, so we’re not going to hold our breath this year.

Lowest seed to reach Final Four

The Final Four usually features more blue-blooded teams, but we’ve seen some party crashers. Five teams seeded in the double digits have made it to the Final Four. There have been four teams seeded No. 11, including LSU (1986), George Mason (2006), VCU (2011), and Loyola Chicago (2018). Additionally, Syracuse did the deed in 2016 as a No. 10 seed.

Lowest seed to win in Final Four

No double digit seed has won in the Final Four. The lowest seeds to claim one win in the Final Four were both No. 8, with Butler (2011) and Kentucky (2014) getting victories.

Lowest seed to win national title

The lowest seeds to win the national title are Villanova as a No. 8 seed in 1985 and UConn as a No. 7 seed in 2014.