12-Seeds

Everybody’s favorite upset!  The 5-12 upset is easily the most popular one to pick, and for good reason.  There’s only been 5 tourneys without one.  Just five!  Three 12’s advanced in 2019, as well as in both 2013 and 2014.  It happens a lot – almost as often as 6-11 upsets.  But how often do these guys make it to the next round?

Since 2000, 33 12-seeds have advanced to the Second Round.    Twelve of them advanced further to the Sweet 16.  Pretty amazing, right?  That’s been the end of the road for all but two 12-seeds (see below).

Overall Performance

  • 51 (of 144) advanced to the Second Round
  • 22 went on to the Sweet 16
  • 2 reached the Elite 8

Performance Over the Last 10 Years

  • 16 (of 40) advanced to the Second Round
  • 4 went on to the Sweet 16
  • 1 reached the Elite 8

5 of the last 8 12-seeds to reach the Sweet 16 beat a 13-seed to get there.

Bracket Performance History and Advice

  • First Round:  35% win their First Round game, which equates to an 83% chance of at least one upset.  A 12-seed failed to advance only 5 times.
  • Second Round:  Only 15% of 12-seeds advance past the Second Round.  It happened in the last two tournaments after a 5-year drought.
  • Sweet 16:  Of the 22 teams to reach this round, only two of them continued to the next.  Four out of the last 10 Sweet 16’s included a 12-seed.
  • Elite 8:  It’s happened twice, ever.
  • Final 4:  Never reached Final 4.

Record in the Second Round

  • vs 4-seeds:  13-26
  • vs 13-seeds:  9-3

Feats of Strength

  • 2002 Missouri became the first 12-seed to reach the Elite 8.  Missouri beat (5-seed) Miami, (4-seed) Ohio State, and (8-seed) UCLA along the way.  They lost to (2-seed) Oklahoma by 6 in the regional final.
  • 2021 Oregon State advanced to the Elite 8 after beating 5-Tennessee, 4-Oklahoma State, and 8-Loyola-Chicago.  They lost to 2-Houston by 6.

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