When is the last time a Big Ten team won March Madness?

The Iowa Hawkeyes will be split in March Madness this year, as the men will miss out and Caitlin Clark's crew pursue a championship. With a chance to make some noise in both brackets, what's the conference's history in the NCAA Tournament?

Rutgers v Maryland
Rutgers v Maryland / David Berding/GettyImages

March Madness is upon us, and the Big Ten is looking to make its mark. Of course, all of Hawkeye Nation will be backing Caitlin Clark and the women's team to finally capture a national championship. Unfortunately, despite a strong effort to close the regular season, the men's team will (in all likelihood) miss out on the NCAA Tournament.

The Hawkeyes have never won an NCAA Tournament, though the program has come close on a few occasions.

Last year, the women's team made it to the national championship for the first time in program history but fell 102-85 to the LSU Tigers. The only other time the Hawkeyes have made it to the Final Four was 30 years prior to that effort in 1993.

On the men's side, the drought has been on for some time. The Hawkeyes have appeared in one national championship back in 1956. Iowa does have three Final Four appearances, however, in 1955, 1956, and 1980.

But speaking of droughts, it's been some time since the Big Ten has won a national championship.

On the men's side, not since 2000 has a Big Ten team gone the distance. That year, the Michigan State Spartans captured their second national championship. Tom Izzo's team went 32-7 and held the advantage as the number one seed.

The most recent runner-up from the conference was Michigan in 2018. The Wolverines fell to Villanova 79–62.

On the women's side, we have to go back to 1999 when the Purdue Boilermakers won the conference's only national championship in women's basketball. Purdue had a dominant season going 34-1, toppling Duke 62-45 for the title.

It's worth noting that there is a current Big Ten team with more recent national championships in both sports. Maryland, though not a member of the conference until 2014, has a women's and men's national championship more recently than any other team in the conference before or since. The men's team won it all in 2002 while the women were the 2006 champions.

For the 2024 NCAA Tournament, the Purdue Boilermakers on the men's side and the Hawkeyes on the women's side are the strongest contenders to bring a national championship back to the Big Ten. The Big Ten is projected to have five teams in the men's tournament and seven in the women's.

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