Top 15 March Madness Buzzer Beaters
There is so much more that goes into a buzzer-beater than just the ball going through the hoop. A lower seed knocking off a higher seed will always make for a more exciting finish. If the game is tied when the shot is put up the buzzer-beater is not as good simply because the game would not have been over if it was missed. Also, a buzzer-beater in the later rounds of the tournament, especially the Final Four, will always mean more. These are the main factors I used in deciding what shots made this list.
15. Wisconsin vs Xavier 2016
The first shot on this list comes from a round of 32 game between Wisconsin and Xavier. 7 seed Wisconsin was tied with 2 seed Xavier with 2.0 seconds left on the clock. Wisconsin inbounds the ball to the corner and pulls up for the game-winning 3.
14. Loyola Chicago vs Miami 2018
During Loyola Chicago’s historic Final Four run they had there fair share of tournament moments. Even though there were 0.3 seconds put back on the clock this was still a great buzzer-beater for a team like Loyola Chicago.
13. UCONN vs Washington 1998
The 11 seed Washington Huskies had won there first two games of the tournament and were looking for a trip to the Elite Eight. With a few seconds left Rip Hamilton and the 2 seed UConn Huskies found themselves down. After several missed shots they got the last one up to beat the buzzer.
12. Duke vs UCONN 1990
This buzzer-beater was Christian Laettner’s first March Madness buzzer-beater of what would be a successful career at Duke. While not a crazy shot this was still an important moment in tournament history.
11. Georgia Tech vs USC 1992
While a 7 seed beating a 2 seed isn’t a crazy upset, this was a great win for Georgia Tech. Georgia Tech imbounds the ball with 0.8 seconds left on the clock and hits the shot to take them to the Sweet Sixteen.
10. UCONN vs Clemson 1990
Before UCONN’s Final Four hopes were taken by a Duke Buzzer Beater they hit one of there own. After a full-court pass UCONN knocks down the game-winning shot to beat Clemson.
9. Murray State vs Vanderbilt 2010
As a 13 seed Murray State needed to hit a last-second shot against 4 seed Vanderbilt to advance. They inbounded the ball from the baseline with very little time on the clock and hit the go-ahead shot.
8. Valparaiso vs Ole Miss 1998
There is nothing more exciting than watching a play work perfectly. Valpo executed the full-court pass to perfection to hit the three to win the game. Not only did they win this game, but they won there next game and went to the Sweet Sixteen as a 13 seed.
7. Florida vs Wisconsin 2017
Even though Florida hit the important shot to win the game in OT, Wisconsin had to hit a three-point shot in order to send the game to OT. Any shot that is taken falling towards the basket is going to look more impressive than a normal three.
6. Michigan vs Houston 2018
Down 2 with only seconds on the clock Michigan needed a three if they wanted to win in regulation. This win sparked a run that would take Michigan all the way to the National Championship game.
5. Arkansas vs Louisville 1981
This shot is one of the longest shots in NCAA tournament history. Arkansas hit a last-second three to take down the defending National Champions in Louisville. Unfortunately, we don’t have great footage of the shot, but that doesn’t hurt the quality of the buzzer-beater.
4. NC State vs Houston 1983
While this shot wasn’t anything special a National Championship buzzer-beater just means more. The story behind this NC State team and their season-long journey is too much to not put them on this list.
3. Duke vs Kentucky 1992
These last three buzzer-beaters are by far and away the best three on this list. If there is anything that people know about 1992 Duke basketball it’s Christian Laettner and “The Shot”. This buzzer beater is a huge factor that got Christian a spot on the 1992 United States Dream Team. This gave Duke their second National Championship in 2 years.
2. Northern Iowa vs Texas 2016
While every list will have this buzzer-beater on them, most do not have it this high. To me, the whole environment behind his shot just makes it perfect. The fact that the lower seed team was able to get the last second win is impressive. Not to mention the fact that the shot was a half courter bank. If number 1 wasn’t in the National Championship, this would be my number 1 buzzer-beater.
1. Villanova vs North Carolina 2016
This buzzer-beater wasn’t a crazy shot by any means, but it was for the National Championship. This was Villanova’s first National Championship since 1985. While I think this shot is slightly overrated, it’s hard to knock it down since it was to win the National Championship.
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