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The 16 most successful programs in NCAA Basketball since 2009, Part 3

I continue my look at the most successful college programs since John Calipari arrived in Lexington.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-East Regional-Wisconsin vs Florida Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Last week, I started my look at the top sixteen programs in college basketball since 2009. Here is a look at my criteria and day one of the series and day two.

Now that you are up to date, let's take a look at the next bracket. But first, let see where we left off with half of the top 16 teams set.


Today, we are revealing the #2, #15, #7 and #10 brackets. As always, let's get ready to argue about my findings. Let’s take a look at the #2 most successful program overall.

NCAA Basketball: Big 12 Championship-Kansas vs TCU Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports


I expect this one to make people mad as the #2 most successful program does not have a national title in the timeframe we are researching. Granted, the Jayhawks have not had a bad run in the NCAA Tournaments with a NCAA runner-up in 2012 and Elite Eight appearances in 2011, 2016, and 2017. Kansas also has a Sweet 16 appearance in 2013. But to some, this team will ever be defined by the tourney flameouts in 2010, 2014, and 2015.

As with Villanova, this would have looked a lot different if I had included 2009 in my sample as the Jayhawks would have a national title on their resume. That was when John Calipari was at Memphis and was not the purpose of this story.

What fuels the criticism of the Jayhawks is that nearly half of their points (32) come from their eight Big 12 titles and four tourney wins. This drives the other conference fans crazy, but in the end, what the Jayhawks have done in their conference has been very impressive and conference success is part of overall program success.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Des Moines Practice Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports


This is an interesting one. How can a two-time NCAA Champion (2011, 2014) be only the 15th most successful program? Well, aside from those two years, the Huskies have made very little noise, just making the tournament in 2012 and 2016.

The Huskies have just two conference tournament titles in 2011 and 2016 and they have had no regular season conference titles since 2006. Even though this is a hypothetical bracket, the #2 vs #15 matchup of the Jayhawks and two-time champion Huskies would be an appealing one. It’s a bizarre world to have a two-time champ as a #15 seed against a team that has not won any titles, but that is where the numbers took us.

NCAA Basketball: Pac-12 Conference Championship Arizona vs Oregon Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports


It's interesting that the Wildcats end up in the same bracket as Kansas as both teams have been maligned for crashing and burning in the NCAA Tournament. Even though Arizona is trashed for not advancing to the Final Four, they have a NCAA Tournament resume most teams would envy.

They have come close to the Final Four with Elite Eight appearances in 2011, 2014, and 2015. They also made the Sweet 16 in 2013 and 2017. Almost half of Arizona's points stem from NCAA Tournament success and they had four seasons with more than 30 wins.

Arizona also has won the PAC-12 four times outright and have two conference tournament wins.

NCAA Basketball: SEC Tournament-Florida vs Vanderbilt Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports


If we were doing a teams of the century ranking, Florida would be well represented because of their back to back National Championship team would be the most successful individual team. Those days are a memory, but the Gators have represented themselves well with a Final Four in 2014 and Elite Eight appearances in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2017. 22 of Florida's points come from their NCAA Tournament success.

Even with John Calipari ruling the roost in the SEC, the Gators have regular season conference titles in 2011, 2013, and 2014 and a conference tournament in 2014. Mike White has done a good job of maintaining the program left by Billy Donovan and the Gators will continue to be Kentucky’s main SEC foil.

Speaking of Kentucky, we still have not gotten to the Wildcats and we have yet to reveal the #1, #8, #9 and #16 team overall. Wonder where the Wildcats will come in? We will find out next post, but first, let’s recap today’s bracket.