Kansas is one of the most successful NCAA basketball programs of all time, with over 2,200 wins and 27 conference championships. They’ve also been to the Final Four 29 times and have won five national championships.
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The Kansas Jayhawks men’s basketball program is the intercollegiate men’s basketball program of the University of Kansas. The program is classified in the NCAA’s Division I and the team competes in the Big 12 Conference.
Kansas’ NCAA Championships
Kansas has won a total of 3 NCAA basketball championships. The Jayhawks have also been to the Final Four 15 times, the most of any team in the nation.
1948 NCAA Championship
The 1948 NCAA Tournament was the eighth NCAA Tournament. Eight teams were selected to compete in the single-elimination tournament, which was then known as the National Invitation Tournament (NIT).
Kansas, coached by Phog Allen, won the tournament by defeating West Virginia in the final, 46–34. It is Kansas’ first and only NCAA basketball championship.
1952 NCAA Championship
The 1952 NCAA Championship game was the culmination of the 1951–52 NCAA basketball season, and was played on March 26, 1952, at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Missouri between the Kansas Jayhawks and the St. John’s Red Storm. The Jayhawks, coached by Phog Allen, won their first NCAA championship with a 77–69 victory. Clyde Lovellette of Kansas was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
1988 NCAA Championship
In 1988, the Jayhawks defeated the Oklahoma Sooners 83-79 to win the NCAA Championship. The victory was Kansas’ first NCAA title in basketball, and it was also the first championship for head coach Larry Brown. The Jayhawks would go on to win two more NCAA titles under Brown, in 1991 and 1992.
2008 NCAA Championship
On April 7, 2008, the Jayhawks defeated Memphis 75–68 in the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament championship game to earn their fifth national title in school history. The Jayhawks were coached by Bill Self and featured All-American guard Brandon Rush.
2012 NCAA Championship
In 2012, the Jayhawks entered the NCAA tournament as the number two seed in the South region. They defeated Detroit in the Round of 64, Purdue in the Round of 32, North Carolina State in the Sweet Sixteen and Ohio State in the Elite Eight to advance to the Final Four for the first time since 2008. In the national semifinals, Kansas defeated Ohio State again, this time by a score of 64–62, to advance to the National Championship game for the first time since 2003. In the National Championship game, Kansas defeated Kentucky 67–59 to win their ninth NCAA national title and their first since 2008.
Kansas’ Conference Championships
Kansas has won 14 conference championships in the Big 12 conference. The Jayhawks have also won 5 NCAA Division 1 championships.Kansas’ most recent conference championship was in 2019.
Big 12 Conference Championships
Kansas has won the most conference championships in the Big 12 Conference with 18. The next closest school is Texas with 11 conference championships.
Missouri Valley Conference Championships
Kansas has won 27 regular season championships and 16 conference tournament championships in the Missouri Valley Conference.
Western Athletic Conference Championships
From 1946 to 1950, Kansas won five consecutive conference championships. In 1957, Kansas was a co-champion with Missouri. The two teams shared the title after each winning their final conference game against Oklahoma State. Missouri then won a playoff game against Kansas, giving them the conference’s berth in the NCAA tournament. This is the only time in conference history that two teams have shared the championship and one team has gone on to win the postseason tournament.
Kansas’ National Championships
Kansas has won a total of four NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championships. The Jayhawks first won the championship in 1952 under head coach Phog Allen. Kansas then won the championship again in 1988 under head coach Larry Brown. The Jayhawks’ most recent championships came in 2008 and 2012 under head coach Bill Self.
1957 NCAA Division I National Championship
The 1957 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament involved 23 schools playing in single-elimination play to determine the national champion of men’s NCAA Division I college basketball. It began on March 12, 1957, and ended with the championship game on March 26 in Kansas City. A total of 32 games were played, including a national third place game.
Kansas, coached by Phog Allen, won the national title with a triple-overtime victory over North Carolina in the championship game, 54–53. Wilt Chamberlain of Kansas was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
1971 NCAA Division I National Championship
The 1971 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament involved 25 schools playing in single-elimination play to determine the national champion of NCAA Division I men’s college basketball. It began on March 13, 1971, and ended with the championship game on March 27 in Los Angeles. A total of 32 games were played, including a national third place game. UCLA, coached by John Wooden, won the national title with an 82–63 victory in the final game over Villanova, coached by Jack Kraft. Howard Porter of Villanova was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.
This was UCLA’s fifth consecutive title and seventh overall. As of 2021, this is still the record for consecutive titles and total championships won by any team in NCAA Division I men’s basketballhistory. UCLA also became the first team to win 100 NCAA tournament games (a feat not matched until Kentucky in 2015).
1986 NCAA Division I National Championship
The 1986 NCAA Division I National Championship was the 64th edition of the NCAA Tournament, held at Reunion Arena in Dallas, Texas. Kansas Jayhawks defeated the Louisville Cardinals 72-69 to win their first NCAA national championship. The championship was the first to be decided in overtime.
Kansas’ head coach, Larry Brown, was named National Coach of the Year by the Associated Press (AP) and United Press International (UPI). He guided the Jayhawks to a 30-4 season record, including 14-0 in conference play to win their fifth consecutive Big Eight regular season championship. The team won all nine of their NCAA tournament games by an average margin of victory of 12 points.
In conclusion, Kansas has won 3 NCAA basketball championships.