Sports Reference Blog

Massive Improvements to NCAA Tournament Box Scores

Posted by Mike Lynch on August 23, 2017

As you may know, our College Basketball site has every box score in NCAA Tournament history. However, many of these box scores were missing certain categories. For instance, blocks, steals and assists were not officially-tracked college basketball statistics until the mid-1980s. And in the tournament's earliest years, only scoring and shooting were officially recorded. Still, we were missing large swaths of available data on these games. However, thanks to the research of Sean Burrill, we have made huge improvements and now have nearly full coverage of all statistical categories for all NCAA Tournament games since the field expanded to 64 teams in 1985.

Here's some grittier details:

--The data is 100% complete back through 1989, when Glen Rice set an NCAA Tournament record with 184 points.

--The only data we're missing from 1985 to 1988 is some offensive/defensive rebound splits (please note we do have the total rebounds for these players). So, for instance, we know Walter Berry had 13 rebounds in the 1985 First Round against Southern, but we don't know how many were offensive.

--In 1988 we're missing offensive rebounds for 105 out of 1189 total player games

--In 1987 we have all data

--In 1986 we're missing offensive rebounds for 455 out of 1182 total player games

--In 1985 we're missing offensive rebounds for 763 out of 1164 total player games

Additionally, we have fleshed out many of our older box scores. However, if you see any of our box scores missing data that you have, please let us know.

We have also made efforts to link all player names in the NCAA Tournament boxes to player pages. However, we know there are still hundreds of cases where the names don't quite match. This is something we plan to work on over time, but if you happen to see any issues of this sort, feel free to let us know and we'll work on fixing it.

These expanded stats are now available in different places on the site, as well.

For instance, Christian Laettner's NCAA Tournament game logs page now contains all statistical categories.

Our list of Most Outstanding Player winners now includes expanded statistical data. As does our listing of the All-Tournament teams. Hopefully we'll be able to flesh out more categories for the outstanding players from the older tourneys. We're also working on adding the All-Region Teams.

We hope you enjoy these new additions. Please let us know if you have any questions, see any issues or have additional data for any of the box scores.

3 Responses to “Massive Improvements to NCAA Tournament Box Scores”

  1. Sean Says:

    We're still sorting out some starters' information.  Mike, do you plan to make a player game finder?

  2. Mike Lynch Says:

    I wouldn't rule it out, but we have a lot of work to do before we get there

  3. Sean Says:

    Try Glenn Robinson, one of the greatest college players of all time, or Steve Alford making good use of the three in its first year of use in tournament play and a year in which Providence made the Final Four.