The Best College Basketball Program of All Time

The University of Connecticut’s men’s and women’s basketball players won a pair of national titles this week, repeating the feat of their Huskies predecessors in 2004. The championships moved UConn into an indisputable lead as the most successful overall Division I college basketball program, when accounting for men’s and women’s achievements.UConn’s men’s and women’s teams, combined, have the most titles, the most tournament wins, the highest winning percentage and the highest average margin of victory in the NCAA tournament in Division I since 1951. The race was a close one until a few weeks ago, but UConn’s success this year coincided with stumbles by its two closest rivals in the category: Duke and Tennessee. It’s a remarkable achievement for UConn, which two decades ago hadn’t won any Division I basketball titles, men’s or women’s.UConn, Duke and Tennessee all entered two teams into tournaments this March. Four of the six teams were seeded third or better, and the two exceptions — UConn’s No. 7 men and Tennessee’s No. 11 men — were underseeded, according to FiveThirtyEight’s model. UConn went 12-0, while Tennessee’s teams won four games from the round of 64 on (plus a play-in win for the men). The Duke teams combined for just one win.If Duke had run the table while UConn disappointed, Duke would lead UConn in tournament wins and winning percentage. Tennessee could have led in winning percentage if its men’s and women’s programs had won titles, and UConn had struggled. UConn, though, would still lead the trio in titles. Its only real competition there is UCLA, which could have passed UConn with a men’s title.But the Bruins’ success has hardly been balanced: UCLA has won as many titles in the men’s tournament as it has won games in the women’s tournament. In fact, outside of Storrs, Conn., and a trio of Atlantic Coast Conference schools — Duke, North Carolina and Maryland — few of the leaders in combined basketball success have been truly successful in men’s and women’s hoops. Tennessee has a losing record in the men’s tournament even after this year’s run, and Stanford gets most of its wins from the women’s side.Kentucky, Kansas and Florida, meanwhile, have had little women’s success. Nonetheless, they appear on our list of the most successful combined programs, showing the teams with at least 10 wins in the men’s and women’s NCAA tournament since 1951 who have the best combined winning percentage in the tournament during that period. Other programs that have achieved a great deal in basketball didn’t even make the first cut, notably Georgia (little men’s success) and Michigan and Syracuse (little women’s success).Methodology alert: I’m counting the entire history of the women’s tournament, plus the men’s tournament since 1951, which is roughly when it superseded the National Invitation Tournament as the premier season-ending event. Including the earlier games and titles would make little practical difference because the tournament fields were so small — the NCAA men’s tournament through 1950 included just 111 games, compared with an overall total of men’s and women’s tournament games of nearly 5,000. I’m including the so-called play-in or first-round games introduced in 2001 since similar opening rounds counted as official games in earlier tournaments with field sizes that weren’t exponents of 2. Data comes from ESPN Stats & Information and, for this year, from the ESPN.com men’s and women’s brackets. read more

Minnesota Locks Up Tubby Smith For Another 3 Years

Tubby Smith, the fiery coach that won a national championship at Kentucky, received the appreciation of his efforts confirmation he desired from the Minnesota Gophers: an eight-year contract extension worth about $1.8 million a season.Smith, who rebuilt Georgia’s program before going to Kentucky and winning the national title in his first season, had been seeking an extension for about 18 months. His Gopher teams have not one an NCAA Tournament game in his five years. They won 23 games last year but only made it to the NIT (lost in the championship game).“I believe that we can get the job done here,” Smith said in a statement. “The commitment from the university is there to continue to grow the program, and I am looking forward to being a part of that.”The most significant part of that commitment is the construction of a practice facility to bring the Gophers up to speed with the rest of the Big Ten and around the country. Smith’s agent, Ricky Lefft, said no specific timetable was spelled out but that a “mutual agreement” has been forged between the university and the coach that the new building is on the horizon.“We needed to make sure there was a commitment to make that investment at the university,” Lefft said to the Associated Press. “It’s been accepted by the institution, and certainly by Coach, that this is necessary to advance the program.”New athletic director Norwood Teague said he looks forward to working with Smith “to help lift Gopher basketball to even greater heights.”Smith  took over a probation-ravaged program still reeling from the academic fraud scandal revealed in 1999, but a pair of one-and-done appearances in the NCAA tournament and a 38-52 record in Big Ten play has fallen short of the hopes he brought from Kentucky, where he won a national championship in 1998 and never finished worse than the second round. He is 103-68 with the Gophers.“Coach has made it clear it’s his desire to be at Minnesota and turn Minnesota into a powerhouse,” Lefft said. “He’s excited about getting it done.” read more

Evacuations lifted as recordsetting Tuna Fire continues to burn in Los Angeles

first_img KUSI Newsroom, SUN VALLEY (KUSI) — There were no visible flames in the Verdugo Mountains Monday, and firefighters continued to concentrate their efforts on putting out embers and digging fire lines around the 7,003 acres of brush that burned over the Labor Day weekend.Los Angeles Fire Department Deputy Chief Trevor Richmond told reporters at a 4 p.m. briefing that there was little change from last night. The briefing included fire chiefs from Burbank, Glendale, an assistant L.A. County fire chief and State Sen. Anthony Portantino, who represents parts of Burbank and the Sunland-Tujunga area.“We still have 1,061 firefighters manning the lines this afternoon,” Richmond said. “Containment is still at 30 percent. There was 7,003 acres burned. All mandatory evacuation orders in Los Angeles, Glendale and Burbank have been lifted. Our evacuation centers in Los Angeles are closed but could re-open if necessary.“The Foothill (210) Freeway was re-opened with the exception of some on-ramps and off-ramps that remain closed,” Richmond continued.Eight injuries were reported including four firefighters, three of whom suffered heat-related illnesses and one some slight burns.The cause of the fire remained under investigation, Richmond said.Portatino said he was on the 210 Freeway today and saw some hot spots being put out by firefighters. He also said that law enforcement would temporarily maintain its presence in the neighborhoods affected by the fire to maintain public safety.Both Richmond and Portatino also emphasized that the weather had changed for the better overnight and the change really helped the fire crews do their work more easily and safely.Earlier, LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas told reporters that hand crews will continue to be out there clearing brush.“There is no active fire yet,’” Terrazas said. “But that could change with the wind. Fire operations are not over. There is still a lot of work to be done.”Bulldozers were used today to reconstruct fire lines dug in haste when the fire broke out Saturday, he said.Temperatures only reached the high 80s today in the fire area, with winds at 3 to 10 miles per hour and a relative humidity at 40 to 45 percent.“Overnight, the weather cooperated and we received some rain. It appears, at least for now, that the fire in the Burbank hillside has laid down significantly. We no longer have any evacuation orders in place in the City of Burbank,” Burbank Police Sgt. Derek Green said.Mayor Eric Garcetti said that most or all of the 1,400 evacuated Los Angeles residents were expected to go home by the end of today.The Foothill (210) Freeway was reopened Sunday, connecting the San Fernando Valley to Pasadena. Fire trucks remained on freeway lanes next to the fire, however.Garcetti welcomed a state of emergency declared in Los Angeles County by Gov. Jerry Brown, saying the decision placed the fire at the highest priority and would bring new resources to fighting it.Gov. Jerry Brown has declared the scene a state emergency, and Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger told reporters the county would issue its state of emergency Tuesday, after the holiday.Two firefighters taken to hospitals during the second day of the fire for heat-related illnesses had stable life signs Terrazas said.A third firefighter was treated for a heat-related illness Sunday, a fourth was treated for burns and a volunteer Community Emergency Response Team member was medically evaluated although the nature of the illness was not released.Three homes were destroyed and one was damaged by flames, along with some miscellaneous sheds, outhouses and stables, Terrazas said.“We believe two of three had no brush clearance,” he said. “So I can’t emphasize enough the importance of a minimum — within L.A. city — a minimum of 200 feet brush clearance, that’s brush from your home.  If there is no defensive space we cannot protect your house.”There was also a drone in the area on Sunday that caused “minimal” impact, he said, adding that the object might have been in the air for at least 15 minutes before witnessed reported the sighting. Police were unable to locate a suspect, he said.“If a drone is the air, we cannot launch or helicopters or fixed wings,” Terrazas said. Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter September 4, 2017 Updated: 5:30 PMcenter_img KUSI Newsroom Posted: September 4, 2017 Evacuations lifted as record-setting Tuna Fire continues to burn in Los Angeleslast_img read more