11-seeds have become the ultimate bracket busters. 2021’s UCLA was the most recent 11-seed to bust millions of brackets by reaching the Final Four. They’ve similarly laid waste to brackets two other times in the last 11 tournaments. 11-seeds have actually reached the Second Round and the Sweet 16 about as often as 12-seeds, but they’re the only double-digit seed (outside of 10-Syracuse in 2016) to make it to the Final 4.
- 57 (of 148) advanced to the Second Round
- 26 went on to the Sweet 16
- 9 reached the Elite 8
- 5 reached the Final 4
Performance Over the Last 10 Years
- 21 (of 40) advanced to the Second Round
- 12 went on to the Sweet 16
- 4 reached the Elite 8
- 2 reached the Final 4
Bracket Performance History and Advice
- First Round: There is an 86% chance of at least one upset. It’s been 19 years since we haven’t seen an 11-seed pull off a First Round upset. Only 3 of the last 29 tournaments didn’t have an 11-6 upset.
- Second Round: 11-seeds are on an incredible run – at least one 11-seed has won a Second Round game in 10 of the last 12 tournaments. Overall, there’s about a 54% chance at least one 11-seed will advance to the Sweet 16.
- Sweet 16: Of the 26 teams to reach this round, nine of them continued to the next. Eight out of the last 10 Sweet 16’s included an 11-seed.
- Elite 8: Only 6% make it this far.
- Final 4: It’s happened five times, ever.
- Final: Never reached the final.
Record in the Second Round
- vs 3-seeds: 20-31
- vs 14-seeds: 6-0
Feats of Strength
- In 1989 all four 11-seeds advanced to the second round
- Five 11-seeds have advanced to the Final 4:
- 2021 – UCLA
- 2018 – Loyola-Chicago
- 2011 – Virginia Commonwealth
- 2006 – George Mason
- 1986 – LSU