CRAWFORD | Ten fast facts about Louisville in the NCAA Tournamen - WDRB 41 Louisville News

CRAWFORD | Ten fast facts about Louisville in the NCAA Tournament

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SEATTLE (WDRB) — The University of Louisville team will hit the court at Key Arena in Seattle later today. But first, a quick rundown of some postseason facts about the Cardinals:

1. U of L is making its 41st NCAA Tournament appearance. That ranks fifth all-time. Only Kentucky (55), North Carolina (46), UCLA (45) and Kansas (44) have more.

2. With 10 Final Four appearances, the Cardinals rank sixth all-time, behind North Carolina (18), UCLA (17), Kentucky (16), Duke (15), Kansas (14) and Ohio State (11). Next on the list are Indiana and Michigan State with 8.

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3. U of L has reached the Sweet Sixteen 20 times. Only North Carolina (25), Kentucky (25) and Duke (23) have done it more.

4. As the No. 4 seed, U of L will face the No. 13 seed University of California-Irvine of the Big West Conference. The Cards are 7-1 against 13 seeds in the NCAA Tournament. The lone loss came in 2011, when Morehead State became the 23rd 13 seed ever to upset a No. 4 with a 62-61 win over Louisville in Denver.

5. Louisville is 10-0 all-time against teams from the Big West, with wins over UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara, Long Beach State (2), Hawai'i (3), UC Riverside, Cal Poly and CSU Northridge. The Cardinals have never played UC Irvine. They are 41-2 against first-time opponents under Rick Pitino.

6. U of L has been a No. 4 seed more than any other NCAA Tournament seed, with this season marking the 10th time. Of the nine previous appearances, the Cards have exited in the second round four times, reached the Sweet 16 five times, and twice (2005 and 2012) advanced onto the Elite Eight and then Final Four.

7. Only three coaches — John Wooden, Mike Krzyzewski and Dean Smith  — have coached in more Final Fours than U of L coach Rick Pitino (7). With his 20th NCAA Tournament appearance this season, Pitino becomes just the 14th coach in NCAA Division I history to reach that number, tying Adolph Rupp of Kentucky. Pitino is 50-17 in the NCAA Tournament all-time, second in winning percentage among active NCAA coaches. Only Mike Krzyzewski is higher, at .760. Pitino's 50 NCAA wins also are third among active coaches. With last season's NCAA appearance, he passed former Louisville coach Denny Crum into eight place on the all-time list for tournament games coached. He ranks fifth all-time in number of tournament games won (behind Krzyzewski, Smith, Williams and Jim Boeheim). He is 10th in NCAA Tournament winning percentage all-time. Pitino has made a Final Four appearance in each of the past four decades, was the first to lead three different programs to the Final Four, and the only coach in NCAA history to win national titles at two different schools.

8. Despite playing their first-ever game in the state of Washington, the Cardinals have had a strong connection to Seattle in recent years. Freshman Shaqquan Aaron lead Rainier Beach High School to the Class 3A state title in Washington in 2014. Point guard Peyton Siva came from Seattle to become one of the most successful point guards in the program's history, twice winning the Most Valuable Player award in the Big East Tournament (only Patrick Ewing of Georgetown shares that distinction with Siva) and leading the 2013 Cardinals to the NCAA title. Terrence Williams was an All-American as a senior at Louisville, leading the Cardinals to the No. 1 overall seed. Williams is the only player in Louisville history to amass 1,500 points, 900 rebounds, 500 assists and 200 steals.

9. The Cardinals are making their ninth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance. While reaching the tournament is somewhat taken for granted in these parts, consider this: Louisville's streak of tournaments is the sixth-longest in the nation. The only schools who have longer NCAA streaks: Kansas, Duke, Michigan State, Gonzaga and Wisconsin.

10. Some Louisville NCAA Tournament bests: Points — Junior Bridgeman (36 against Rutgers, 1975). Rebounds — Wes Unseld (22 against Houston, 1968). Field-goal percentage — Dwayne Morton (1.000, 7-7, against Minnesota in 1994). Three-point field goals — Taquan Dean (7 against West Virginia in 1995). Three-point percentage — Morton (1.000, 5-5 against Minnesota in 1994). Free throws — Wesley Cox (made 12 against Oral Roberts in 1974) and Russ Smith (made 12 against Oregon in 2013). Free-throw percentage — Cox (12-12 against Oral Roberts in 1994). Assists — Phil Bond (14 against UCLA in 1977). Steals — Russ Smith (8 against North Carolina A&T in 2013). Blocked shots — Gorgui Dieng (7 against Michigan State in 2012) and Pervis Ellison (7 against Illinois in 1989).

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