Another Season in the Books: We can turn the page. The college basketball season is over. Now we can focus on spring football at Auburn and Alabama.
This gradually builds with summer workouts until the kickoff of the season in early September for most teams.
The NCAA Basketball Championship was won by Kansas. It ended around 10:30 local time on a Monday night.
The Jayhawks mounted the largest comeback in tourney history. Carolina choke? I guess.
As for Bill Self's team, the one where basketball was invented by Naismith himself, it was their fourth national championship.
That surprised me a little. Kansas is considered one of the bluebloods of college basketball - and they should be. I still thought they might have at least one or two more rings.
UCLA leads the pack with 11 overall championships - most during the John Wooden era. Next on the list is Kentucky with eight. North Carolina has six. Duke and Indiana have five each.
Kansas' four places them in a tie with UConn at sixth overall. Villanova has three. There are no other programs with more than two.
The NCAA Tournament has not always been the way of determining the true champion. Once upon a time, the NIT was just as big. Times have changed.
College football has not always had one unanimous champion as it does today with the playoff. It's only been around since 2014. Before that we had the BCS. Prior to that it was the polls. In the early years, teams were awarded by numerous outfits.
Kansas has no college football championships. They have the distinction of being the worst Power 5 team in college football.
Alabama claims 18 titles on the gridiron. Some of the early ones were before the AP Poll existed. They have names alongside some of those like Dunkel and Houlgate, now bygone services.
Many of the championships were determined as an afterthought. National titles were not awarded back in the early days.
According to the NCAA, the first national champions were co-champs, Rutgers and Yale. That was for the first year of the game - 1869. However, the champs were not named until 1933.
The NCAA notes that 187 national champions have been named in football in some capacity over the past 150 years. It credits Alabama with 16.
The two missing championships are from 1934 and 1941. Both teams were coached by Frank Thomas.
The '34 team went 10-0 and beat Stanford in the Rose Bowl 29-13. The '41 team was 9-2 and won in the Cotton Bowl over Texas A&M 29-21.
That' '41 team is the one that is always disputed. Alabama was ranked No. 20 in the AP Poll and finished third in the SEC. So how can you still be national champs? Ask Houlgate. It's system had Bama on top, so they claim it.
The most notable oversight of a national title-worthy season would have to be 1966. Alabama had won the previous two national championships but finished third in '66 behind Notre Dame and Michigan State, even with an 11-0 record. Those two teams tied in "The Game."
The '66 miss is reminiscent of Auburn's 2004 snub. The Tigers went through the gauntlet of the SEC slate unscathed but found themselves behind undefeated USC and Oklahoma at season's end. They too missed out on a trophy-raising opportunity.
Which program has the most national titles? It's not Alabama nor Notre Dame, Michigan, USC or Ohio State. It's Yale.
According to the NCAA, the Bulldogs have 18. Yale doesn't even compete in the FBS as an Ivy these days. All of their championships are pre-WWII. The AP poll had not even begun when they won their last championship in 1927.
Much like college basketball, the list of college football programs with numerous banners in the modern era is short. Only five Power Five's have five or more since the advent of the AP Poll in 1936; Alabama (13), Notre Dame (9), Ohio State (8), Oklahoma (7) and USC (7).
Kansas' Bill Self needed to win another. He now has two title rings. He makes Nick Saban money though (approximately $10 million a year). Saban has how many natty's? Yep - seven.