The ACC has two teams in this year's Sweet 16, North Carolina and N.C. State. Such representation is nice, to be sure, but no big deal. Not compared to other leagues, or even to recent showings by the ACC.
Certainly the ACC's 2012 participation pales in comparison with the Big East and Big 10. Between them, with four teams each, those conferences supplied half of the teams in the Sweet 16.
But those are larger leagues. Well, the Big East is larger, anyway.
The last time the ACC had four teams in the regional semifinals was - 1995.
And the ACC did have three teams in the Sweet 16 just last season. That's recent.
Of course three reps is an aberration for the New, Improved, 12-member ACC. In fact, 2005 and 2011 were the only times since expansion the conference managed as many as three teams in the Sweet 16.
The paucity of ACC participants dates back nearly two decades. Four times from 1990 through 1995 the ACC had a quartet of squads reach the Sweet 16. That was back when the league had eight and then nine members. Since '95 the ACC has seen no more than three squads make so deep an NCAA penetration in any season.
Over those 17 seasons the league had as many as three participants in the Sweet 16 just four times - 1998, 2004, 2005, and 2011.
For the longest time, the ACC annually sent at least two teams to the Sweet 16. That unmatched string, which began in 1980, lasted until 2007. North Carolina was the sole ACC survivor to get that far in '07. Also in 2008. Duke was the lone ranger in 2010, advancing all the way to the national championship.
One more thing. Remember the parity that supposedly swept the NCAA in recent years? Not hearing much about it this March. Just two teams from outside the power conferences advanced to the 2012 regional semis. That's the fewest since 2005.
SURVIVED TO ADVANCE
|16||Duke||1990, 91, 92, 94, 98, 99, 2000, 01, 02, 03, 04, 05, 06, 09, 10, 11|
|3||Florida State$||1992, 93, 2011|
|4||Georgia Tech||1990, 92, 96, 2004|
|7||Maryland||1994, 95, 98, 99, 2001, 02, 03|
|14||North Carolina||1990, 91, 92, 93, 95, 97, 98, 2000, 05, 07, 08, 09, 11, 12|
|2||N.C. State||2005, 12|
|4||Wake Forest||1993, 95, 96, 2004|
|* Joined ACC in 2005-06.
$ Joined ACC in 1991-92
** Joined ACC in 2004-05
|Since 1990, By League:|
|57||Â Big East|
|47||Â Big 12|
|41||Â Big 10|
|Big East||4||Cincinnati, Louisville, Marquette, Syracuse|
|Big 10||4||Indiana, Michigan State, Ohio State, Wisconsin|
|ACC||2||North Carolina, N.C. State|
|Big 12||2||Baylor, Kansas|
|ACC||3||Duke, Florida State, North Carolina|
|Big East||2||Connecticut**, Marquette|
|Big 10||2||Ohio State, Wisconsin|
|Others:||5||Butler*, BYU, Richmond, San Diego State, VCU*|
|Big East||2||Syracuse, West Virginia*|
|Big 10||3||Michigan State*, Ohio State, Purdue|
|Big 12||2||Baylor, Kansas State|
|Others||5||Butler*, Cornell, Northern Iowa, St. Mary's, Xavier|
|* Reached Final Four.
** Won NCAA title.
Duke Basketball Blue Book
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