A Dose of NCAA Basketball History
The National Collegiate Athletic Association was the
trendsetter in ambiguity and victory. It is has
undergone a lot of ups and downs. From the very
founder of the game which all basketball enthusiasts
have to be thankful for, Dr. Naismith. He, who showed
people that a game this big can come from a game so
seemingly small then.
It’s like looking through the hourglass where sands of
time has lost track of the day that has passed. NCAA
basketball revitalized the blood of every college
individual. Dreamers and supporters alike are the ones
who made every event possible.
NCAA begins on the month of March. This is usually the
time where cheerleaders strut their moves and the best
players are molded into persons who will pave the way
to get into the NBA or get into the school of their
choice. “March Madness”, as they call it, had become a
traditional season where colleges from different parts
of the United States meet for a chance to get to the
This wouldn’t all be possible without the help of a
few significant people who paved the way for the
firsts. First event. First MVP. First team champion.
It’s all included in NCAA’s history record.
It was stated that the very first NCAA tournament for
men’s basketball was held at Northwestern on March 27,
1939. There were only 8 teams that competed against
each other coming from 2 different regions. Oregon was
the very first to be declared as champions for that
event, defeating Ohio State.
The NCAA was the king of the basketball arena but not
until the 1950’s came. NIT went into the scene and was
then considered as the more prestigious event than
NCAA. Teams then preferred to play in NIT and choose
to skip the NCAA season.
Because of this irony, the best teams never met. But
either way, some of the best schools choose to enter
both tournaments that made playing more interesting.
In the 1940’s, Oklahoma A&M won two titles in the
NCAA. Those who were defeated in NIT recovered much
and gained integrity when they entered the NCAA. While
some schools decided to stick with NIT, there are
others who lost on their first and second round with
NIT and decided to finish the season in the NCAA.
A third-place event was added into the game schedule
in courtesy with the East region. That was in 1941.
The national third-place game was first held in 1946.
This lasted until the 1980’s. In comes 1951. This was
the year where the expansion of 8 teams were made into
16. Seattle became the site of the semifinal and
championship games in 1952. This was also the place
where the genuine “final four” was made.
1956 became historical for this year paved the way for
the tournament to be divided into regions of four.
Thus, the most magnificent and famous games were made.
In 1974, NCAA became a tournament with 32 teams. They
also allowed more schools to participate in
conferences. When 1979 came, it expanded to 40
participating teams. This is the year when Michigan
State won national championship against Indiana State.
This tournament was one of the most historical events
ever accounted for in all of NCAA seasons. Earvin
“Magic” Johnson became well known going against Larry
As the expansion follows over the years, in 1985, it
had become a 64-team match. The tournament’s
popularity reached the corners of the country far and
wide. Negotiations from television networks to air the
game via satellite speeding through the internet,
radio, etc. had been agreed upon.