Best Teams Not To Win A Title | The Boneyard

Best Teams Not To Win A Title

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geordi

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You've got to put the 96 team that lost to UCLA in that batch. Ray Ray's team was better than the 2006 team and most of the others on that list.
 
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You've got to put the 96 team that lost to UCLA in that batch. Ray Ray's team was better than the 2006 team and most of the others on that list.
In our "Big Book of Almosts," I have it like this:

1. 1994
2. 2009
3. 1996
4. 1990
5. 2006

If Donyell makes those free throws we win the whole damn thing. And if Dyson doesn't get hurt... and if Moore doesn't get hurt... I think those two teams make it to the final and have slightly less than a 50/50 shot.

1990 probably gets smoked by UNLV, while 2006 was too reliant upon Marcus to be all that great.
 
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I agree with 1996.

Tyus Edney's layup against Mizzou in the Sweet 16 probably cost a NC.
 

Waquoit

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You've got to put the 96 team that lost to UCLA in that batch. Ray Ray's team was better than the 2006 team and most of the others on that list.

That's a good point. Our 96 team obliterates the 06 team.
 

intlzncster

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Without looking, a couple come to mind in no particular order (ex UCONN):

1985 Georgetown
1999 Duke
1992 Michigan
1991 UNLV
 
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The '96 team probably isn't on there cause their results were vacated. Also probably why '08 Memphis isn't on there.
 

UconnU

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2009 was a bigger disappointment imo. 2006 we had 1 player who could handle the ball and distribute the ball. 09 we werent as deep but we had 3-4 players who could handle the ball. 06 with aj is a different story.
 

UChusky916

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Surprised to see the 2014 Florida team on the list, AHEAD of 2006 Huskies. Was Florida REALLY even that good this year? Yes, I know they were great and probably the most CONSISTENT team in college basketball last year. But, to be put on this list as historically a team that should have won a title? I don't buy it. People won't remember Patric Young or Scottie Wilbekin in 3-5 years. You mean to tell me that they were heavier favorites to win it all than a UConn team in 2006 that had basically their starting line-up drafted?

Florida had solid, senior leadership and great all-around play at every position with depth. Honestly, the SEC was far from a juggernaut conference last year, so it's tough to argue that they were so great if they're not beating that many great opponents (outside of UK a few times, who matched up well). I think their inclusion was more of a recency bias than anything.
 
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That 2010 Kansas Jayhawks was so incredibly stacked, pretty sure upwards of 60% of the country had them winning their bracket. I really think they were leaps and bounds better than the 2014 Florida Squad and the 2005 Illinois team despite their tremendous guard play. That 3 by Ali Farokhmanesh was one of the biggest shots I've ever seen
 
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I think that was the '97 team.

You're a year off in this thread - '95 was UCLA, '96 was Miss. St., '97 was just pain (until the NIT anyway). Our '96 tourney performance was vacated.
 

Waquoit

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You're a year off in this thread - '95 was UCLA, '96 was Miss. St., '97 was just pain (until the NIT anyway). Our '96 tourney performance was vacated.

Right. I knew it was the MSU season that was vacated.
 
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Surprised to see the 2014 Florida team on the list, AHEAD of 2006 Huskies. Was Florida REALLY even that good this year? Yes, I know they were great and probably the most CONSISTENT team in college basketball last year. But, to be put on this list as historically a team that should have won a title? I don't buy it. People won't remember Patric Young or Scottie Wilbekin in 3-5 years. You mean to tell me that they were heavier favorites to win it all than a UConn team in 2006 that had basically their starting line-up drafted?

Florida had solid, senior leadership and great all-around play at every position with depth. Honestly, the SEC was far from a juggernaut conference last year, so it's tough to argue that they were so great if they're not beating that many great opponents (outside of UK a few times, who matched up well). I think their inclusion was more of a recency bias than anything.

Duke was the heavy favorites to win it all in 2006 - they were the No. 1 overall seed, it was Redick's senior year and they won the ACC Tournament, while we flopped out in the quarters to Syracuse after playing like ass in the final two weeks of the regular season. Then we were down by 12 to Albany in the second half, eked by a pretty pedestrian Kentucky team, and we almost certainly lose to Washington if they don't give Brandon Roy his fourth on a cheap double tech.

At no point did we look like the favorites to win it all, and only one guy has stuck in the NBA. If we had lost to Washington like we should have, we would be on nobody's list of great teams not to win. But since we lost to George Mason, we're remembered as the Tyson to their Buster Douglass.

Under no way shape or form does that team belong on the list of best anythings.
 
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1995 and 2009 were our best teams to not win.

Just go to UConnHuskyGames.com and watch that Elite 8 Game vs UCLA. Break neck pace. They played that way all tournament.

I'd argue that the 2002 team by seasons end was also better than 2006. Caron was the best player in that tournament and it took an A game from the eventual Champion to knock them out.
 
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The '96 team probably isn't on there cause their results were vacated. Also probably why '08 Memphis isn't on there.

That can't be true because the Fab Five are on there (by the way, them being ahead of '99 Duke is a joke).
 
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In our "Big Book of Almosts," I have it like this:

1. 1994
2. 2009
3. 1996
4. 1990
5. 2006

If Donyell makes those free throws we win the whole damn thing. And if Dyson doesn't get hurt... and if Moore doesn't get hurt... I think those two teams make it to the final and have slightly less than a 50/50 shot.

1990 probably gets smoked by UNLV, while 2006 was too reliant upon Marcus to be all that great.

Don't know why 2002 gets overlooked.

We were about 2 mins away from getting past Maryland. If we do, no one left would have beaten Caron and that team. That was about as much of a back and forth game as you can get against the best team that year. No UConn team went out better against a tough opponent than 2002 did.

1. 1995. 2. 2009 and 3. 2002

The only 3 that could have won it but didn't.

1994 was playing tight that whole post season. Lost to Providence in the BET semis. Sluggish wins in the 1st 2 rounds. 1996 and 1990 were Kentucky and UNLV's to lose. 2006 just never put it together in March.
 
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Strange decisions. I think that "Best Teams not to Win" have to be the overwhelming favorites going into the tournament. I guess if you think there are two historically great teams in one season, sure.

For these purposes, 1995 can't count because we clearly weren't the favorite. Neither can 1994--UNC maybe, but not us. 1996 we were probably 3rd in line, behind UK and UMass as favorites.

2004 (despite our seed) and 2006 were two years we went into the tournament as favorites. I know @Gurleyman says that Duke was the heavy favorite in 2006, but I don't think that's true. Notice neither #1 overall 2004 (UK) nor the two teams that either went into the final weekend or their own conference tournament undefeated (Stanford and St. Joe's) is listed here. Seeding is irrelevant. Duke had 3 losses; UConn had 3 losses.

And I think most people thought we were the most talented team--Gay, Boone, Armstrong, and Williams were all drafted in the first round that year. So, there was a perception that we were the best team that year, even if we often didn't back it up. While we know the 2006 team was fatally flawed (despite the fact that a win against GMU and I think they win), most of the country doesn't see it like that. We pay attention to our own team in ways that others don't. And perception (we were the most talented team and choked) is really reality (we may have been the most talented, but we needed a second ball handler. Also we choked) in these things.
 
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That 2010 Kansas Jayhawks was so incredibly stacked, pretty sure upwards of 60% of the country had them winning their bracket. I really think they were leaps and bounds better than the 2014 Florida Squad and the 2005 Illinois team despite their tremendous guard play. That 3 by Ali Farokhmanesh was one of the biggest shots I've ever seen
That was a damn good team and thank you for reminding me about Ali Farokmanes one of the great names to etch their way into NCAA tournament lore

Don't see how people on this board can think 2006 even belongs on that list. That team barely survived against Albany, Kentucky and Washington. Even of they get by Mason no way do they beat the gators and ucla.

That 1999 duke team and the UNLV team in 91 immediately come to mind as great teams that missed the big one. Not old enough to remember early 80's teams. 1985 Georgetown with Ewing Reggie Williams and David wingate was not too shabby either
 
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UCweCONN

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1996.
My bad, I meant 1995. This was a classic case of matchups. They ran into the one team that could out-run them. G-damn Tyus Edney! Had they not played UCLA, I think they'd have won it all. I actually thought the Dream Team might have won it all. The first team I thought before the season would win it all was the 1996 team. G-Damn free throws!!!
 
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2004 (despite our seed) and 2006 were two years we went into the tournament as favorites. I know @Gurleyman says that Duke was the heavy favorite in 2006, but I don't think that's true. Notice neither #1 overall 2004 (UK) nor the two teams that either went into the final weekend or their own conference tournament undefeated (Stanford and St. Joe's) is listed here. Seeding is irrelevant. Duke had 3 losses; UConn had 3 losses.

Heavy might be too strong a word, but they were the top overall seed and they were playing well going in to the NCAAs, winning the ACC title. We were sort of limping in to the tourney - there was the BET upset loss to Syracuse where we were outplayed (we trailed the whole way, came back to take a late lead and then gave GMac the tying three). But in late February/early March, we were tied with a sub .500 Louisville team at home with a minute to play, and went double overtime at home with an NIT-bound Notre Dame. We also jumped out to a 17-0 lead against South Florida and blew the whole lead by the second half before winning by 10 (USF was 7-24 that year).

I don't think we were a popular pick to win it all, and anyone left on the bandwagon certainly hopped off when we looked like we were going to be the first ever 1 seed to lose a 1-16 game.
 
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Heavy might be too strong a word, but they were the top overall seed and they were playing well going in to the NCAAs, winning the ACC title. We were sort of limping in to the tourney - there was the BET upset loss to Syracuse where we were outplayed (we trailed the whole way, came back to take a late lead and then gave GMac the tying three). But in late February/early March, we were tied with a sub .500 Louisville team at home with a minute to play, and went double overtime at home with an NIT-bound Notre Dame. We also jumped out to a 17-0 lead against South Florida and blew the whole lead by the second half before winning by 10 (USF was 7-24 that year).

I don't think we were a popular pick to win it all, and anyone left on the bandwagon certainly hopped off when we looked like we were going to be the first ever 1 seed to lose a 1-16 game.
We went into the tournament on a loss, but we were still the #2 overall seed. But that's missing part of why were so so heavily regarded.

The first loss was Marcus Williams' first game back. Most people just discounted that once he got his act together. The second loss was on the road to Villanova, another #1 seed which we then avenged with a double-digit loss weeks later. And the Syracuse loss looked a loss less bad once they won the BET. They were better losses than Duke's (who had lost the last two games before the ACCT), and they exposed what everyone knew about Duke: an athletic team would take them out. People didn't think that about us. We had a great PG, an AA in Gay, and the deepest (everyone thought) interior in the nation. And we went undefeated through a tough OOC largely without our top PG.

Again, retrospect--and our own rationalizations, fair or now--have brought us to see this team's limitations. But I'm not shocked others didn't.

Unfortunately, I can't find gambling odds, and all the old message boards don't have archives that go back that far, so I guess it is your word against mine. It's not like it's that big a deal, though.
 
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