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1941 Men's NCAA Basketball Tournament

75 Years of March Madness (NCAA)

1941 NCAA Tournament | Bracket

Champion: Wisconsin

Most Outstanding Player:John Kotz, Wisconsin

Final Four: Wisconsin, Washington State, Pittsburgh, Arkansas

Shining Moments

  • Wisconsin: a timeless team. The 39-34 final over Washington State could’ve been played last year for all that matters. This was te first tournament with a star who failed in the big spot. Washington State had a galut in Paul Lindeman, but UW held him to three points in the title game thanks to ferocious double-teaming.
  • According to school archives, females were allowed to stay out late to greet the champs when they got back around 1 a.m. local time in Wisconsin following the title. I’d love to travel back to that time and see what life was like.
  • This was the first of what is now 43 NCAA tournament bids by North Carolina. (That is second all time to Kentucky’s 52.) UNC lost to Pitt, a barnburner, 26-20 in the first round/Elite Eight.
- Matt Norlander

Championship Game

Location: Kansas City

Wisconsin (39)
Player FG FT-A PF. PTS.
Charlie Epperson 2 0-0 3 4
Warren Schrage 0 0-0 1 0
John Kotz 5 2-3 2 12
Gene Englund 5 3-4 2 13
Don Timmerman 1 0-0 1 2
Fred Rehm 2 0-1 2 4
Ted Strain 0 2-2 1 2
Bob Alwin 1 0-0 0 2
Totals 16 7-10 12 39

Washington State (34)
Player FG FT-A PF. PTS.
Dale Gentry 0 1-2 1 1
Marv Gilberg 1 0-2 1 2
Vern Butts 1 1-1 1 3
Paul Lindeman 0 3-4 1 3
Jim Zimmerman 0 0-0 0 0
Kirk Gebert 10 1-2 1 21
Owen Hunt 0 0-0 0 0
Ray Sundquist 2 0-1 3 4
John Hooper 0 0-0 0 0
Totals 14 6-12 8 34

  • Scoring Leader: John Adams, Arkansas (48 points, 24 ppg).
  • Most Outstanding Player: John Kotz, F, Soph., Wisconsin (22 points in final two games).

    1941 Tournament Scores

    REGIONAL SEMIFINALS
    East
    Wisconsin 51, Dartmouth 50
    Pittsburgh 26, North Carolina 20

    West
    Washington State 48, Creighton 39
    Arkansas 52, Wyoming 40


    REGIONAL THIRD PLACE
    East
    Dartmouth 60, North Carolina 59

    West
    Creighton 45, Wyoming 44


    REGIONAL FINALS
    East
    Wisconsin 36, Pittsburgh 30

    West
    Washington State 64, Arkansas 53


    CHAMPIONSHIP
    Wisconsin 39, Washington State 34
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