6-seeds have been generally unremarkable.  If, and that’s a significant if, they get past their 11-seed foe, their next opponent is usually a 3-seed.  The 6-seed made somewhat regular appearances in the Elite 8 through the first 17 years of the expanded tournament.  It’s only happened three times since then.  It’s been 25 years since the last time a 6-seed made the Final 4.  Maybe they’re due??

Overall, 82 (of 128) 6-seeds advanced to the Round of 32.  42 went on to the Sweet 16, and 14 reached the Elite 8.  Three 6-seeds have reached the Final 4, 2 made the championship game, and one was crowned champion.

Over the last 10 years, 21 (of 40) advanced to the Round of 32.  8 went on to the Sweet 16, and 2 reached the Elite 8.

Record in the Second Round (by seed matchup)

  • vs 3-seeds:  28-38
  • vs 14-seeds:  14-2

Feats of Strength

  • The only two 6-seeds to make a Championship Game run are:
    • 1992:  Michigan – lost to 1-seed Duke 71-51
    • 1988:  Kansas – beat 1-seed Oklahoma 83-79
  • Three 6-seeds have reached the Elite 8 in the last 15 years:  Wisconsin in ’05, Tennessee in ’10, and Notre Dame in ‘16.

Bracket Advice

There’s an equal chance of either two or three 6-seeds getting past their first opponents.  Three of the last 10 years we didn’t get one, but this year we’ll probably see at least one 6-seed make it to the Sweet 16.  It’s possible, but not likely, that we’ll see one make it to the Elite 8.  A 6-seed hasn’t reached the Final 4 since 1992, so it would be a shocker to see one make it this year.

Pick two or three of these guys to win their first game.  Picking one to move on to the Sweet 16 is a fairly safe move. We won’t see any 6-seeds advance past that, though.  Pick otherwise at your own risk.

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