The March Madness seeding system is a massive aspect of the NCAA Tournament as it directly shapes the brackets.
The Tournament earned the “March Madness” title thanks to the unpredictable nature of the games, with lower-seeded teams routinely knocking off higher seeds. History remembers the early-round upset artists as much as – perhaps more than – it remembers the champions.
March Madness 5 seeds earn their spot in the tournament due to strong regular-season performances that earn the respect of the committee, but their record is a prime example of the madness the tournament is known for.
So, how have 5 seeds fared in the NCAA Tournament?
A History of March Madness 5 Seeds
Since the tournament expanded to its current format in 1985, 5 seeds have never won the NCAA Tournament. They are the only seed among the top eight never to win the National Title.
|Seed||NCAAM Titles||Overall Percentage|
Only seven teams have entered the tournament as 5 seeds and advanced to the Final Four. Of those teams, three made it to the finals and none were successful at winning the tournament.
For the opening round, 5 seeds have a 95-53 record against 12 seeds since 1985. Two teams – Iowa and Connecticut – lost in the first round as 5 seeds in the 2022 tournament.
Only five years – 1988, 2000, 2007, 2015, 2018 – saw every 5 seed avoid an upset in the opening round. The same number of years – 2002, 2009, 2013, 2014, and 2019 – saw three of four 5 seeds sent home after their first game.
The next March Madness 5 seed to win it all will be the first; the next to lose to a 12 seed and shock college basketball fans nationwide will be one of many.