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1972 Men's NCAA Basketball Tournament

75 Years of March Madness (NCAA)

1972 NCAA Tournament | Bracket

Champion: UCLA

Most Outstanding Player: Bill Walton, UCLA

Final Four: Florida State, North Carolina, Louisville, UCLA

Shining Moments

  • Bill Walton’s first appearance in the NCAA tournament didn’t disappoint, as the big man averaged 20 points and 16 rebounds. The Bruins cruised throughout the season, beating teams by an average of 30.3 points per game – the only time they ever trailed by more than four points was the finals against Florida State.
  • Florida State had been on probation the previous three years for recruiting violations, but the Seminoles made a run to the title game.
  • Southwestern Louisiana (now Louisiana-Lafayette) was eligible for the NCAA tournament for the first time in 1972 – and the Ragin’ Cajuns made the tournament. That feat wouldn’t be repeated for nearly 40 years, when North Dakota State made the Big Dance in 2009. As a side note, the 1972 NCAA tournament appearance was later vacated by the NCAA.
- Jeff Borzello

Championship Game

Location: Los Angeles

UCLA (81)
Player Min. FG-A FT-A Reb. A PF Pts.
Keith Wilkes 38 11-16 1-2 10 3 4 23
Larry Farmer 33 2-6 0-0 6 0 2 4
Bill Walton 34 9-17 6-11 20 2 4 24
Greg Lee 16 0-0 0-0 2 4 0 0
Henry Bibby 40 8-17 2-3 3 1 2 18
Tommy Curtis 24 4-14 0-1 4 6 1 8
Larry Hollyfield 9 1-6 0-0 2 3 2 2
Swen Nater 6 1-2 0-1 1 0 0 2
Totals 200 36-78 9-18 50 19 15 81
FG%--.463. FT%--.737.
 
Florida State (76)
Player Min. FG-A FT-A Reb. A PF Pts.
Rowland Garrett 37 1-9 1-1 5 0 1 3
Ron King 31 12-20 3-3 6 1 1 27
Reggie Royals 33 5-7 5-6 10 2 5 15
Lawrence McCray 23 3-6 2-5 6 3 4 8
Greg Samuel 31 3-10 0-0 1 7 1 6
Ron Harris 26 7-13 2-3 6 1 1 16
Otto Petty 9 0-0 1-1 0 2 1 1
Otis Cole 10 0-2 0-0 2 1 1 0
Totals 200 31-67 14-19 42 17 15 76
FG%--.462. FT%--.500.

National semifinals

Florida State 79, North Carolina 75
FLORIDA STATE (79): Garrett 4-8 3-7 11, King 6-17 10-10 22, Royals 6-8 6-7 18, McCray 3-6 3-6 9, Samuel 2-4 1-4 5, Harris 1-6 2-2 4, Petty 3-5 4-7 10, Gay 0-1 0-0 0. Team 25-55 (.455) 29-43 (.674) 79.

NORTH CAROLINA (75): Jones 4-8 1-1 9, Wuycik 7-16 6-6 20, McAdoo 10-19 4-5 24, Previs 1-5 3-6 5, Karl 5-14 1-3 11, Huband 0-1 0-0 0, Chamberlain 2-5 2-3 6, Johnston 0-1 0-0 0, Chambers 0-1 0-1 0-0. Team 29-70 (.414) 17-25 (.680) 75.

Halftime: Florida State 45-32.

UCLA 96, Louisville 77
UCLA (96): Wilkes 5-11 2-2 12, Farmer 6-12 3-5 15, Walton 11-13 11-12 33, Lee 3-6 4-6 10, Bibby 1-5 0-0 2, Curtis 4-5 0-0 8, Hollyfield 3-6 0-0 6, Carson 1-1 0-0 2, Nater 0-0 2-4 2, Hill 1-1 4-4 6, Chapman 0-0 0-1 0, Franklin 0-1 0-0 0. Team 35-61 (.574) 26-34 (.765) 96.

LOUISVILLE (77): Lawhon 0-7 1-2 1, Thomas 2-4 0-0 4, Vilcheck 3-6 0-0 6, Price 11-23 8-9 30, Bacon 5-11 5-7 15, Carter 4-8 0-0 8, Bunton 1-5 1-1 3, Bradley 1-3 0-0 2, Stallings 1-2 0-1 2, Cooper 0-1 2-2 2, Pry 2-3 0-0 4, Meiman 0-1 0-0 0. Team 30-74 (.405) 17-22 (.773) 77.

Halftime: UCLA 39-31.

All-Tournament Team

Player Pos. Yr. School Statistics
Ron King G Jr. Florida St. (49 pts, 11 rebs)
Bob McAdoo C Jr. North Carolina (54 pts, 34 rebs)
Jim Price G Sr. Louisville (53 pts, 9 rebs)
Bill Walton C Soph. UCLA* (57 pts, 41 rebs)
Keith Wilkes F Soph. UCLA (35 pts, 16 rebs)
*Named Most Outstanding Player.
  • Scoring Leader: Jim Price, Louisville (103 points, 25.75 ppg).
  • Highest Scoring Average: Bo Lamar, Southwestern Louisiana (100 points, 33.3 ppg).
  • Rebounding Leader: Bill Walton, UCLA (64 rebounds, 16 rpg).
  • Highest Rebounding Average: Jim Brewer, Minnesota (36 rebounds, 18 rpg).
  • 1972 Tournament Scores

    FIRST ROUND
    Mideast
    Marquette 73, Ohio University 49
    Florida State 83, Eastern Kentucky 81

    East
    South Carolina 53, Temple 51
    Villanova 85, East Carolina 70
    Penn 76, Providence 60

    Midwest
    Southwestern Louisiana 112, Marshall 101
    Texas 85, Houston 74

    West
    Weber State 91, Hawaii 64
    Long Beach State 95, Brigham Young 90 (OT)


    REGIONAL SEMIFINALS
    Mideast
    Kentucky 85, Marquette 69
    Florida State 70, Minnesota 56

    East
    North Carolina 92, South Carolina 69
    Penn 78, Villanova 67

    Midwest
    Louisville 88, Southwestern Louisiana 84
    Kansas State 66, Texas 55

    West
    UCLA 90, Weber State 58
    Long Beach State 75, San Francisco 55


    REGIONAL THIRD PLACE
    Mideast
    Minnesota 77, Marquette 72

    East
    South Carolina 90, Villanova 78

    Midwest
    Southwestern La. 100, Texas 70

    West
    San Francisco 74, Weber State 64


    REGIONAL FINALS
    Mideast
    Florida State 73, Kentucky 54

    East
    North Carolina 73, Penn 59

    Midwest
    Louisville 72, Kansas State 65

    West
    UCLA 73, Long Beach State 57


    NATIONAL SEMIFINALS
    Florida State 79, North Carolina 75
    UCLA 96, Louisville 77

    NATIONAL THIRD PLACE
    North Carolina 105, Louisville 91

    NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
    UCLA 81, Florida State 76

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