9

Kansas State has never won a team title in any NCAA sport, either men's or women's.

Are there any other teams that have been in NCAA Division I since at least 1973 (when the current three-division structure was adopted) that have failed to win any national championships?

I'm including football championships, despite not being held by the NCAA itself, as championships, since they are recognized by the NCAA.

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  • I'd guess there are dozens, if not hundreds, considering the many relatively small schools which compete in Division I (e.g. the MAAC schools: I'm pretty sure Siena's never won a national title, for example.) – pjmorse Dec 28 '12 at 19:36
  • @pjmorse: There are only what, 300 schools in Division 1? I'd guess there are dozens at most. If that's still too broad, perhaps limiting it to FBS schools would be better. – Michael Myers Dec 28 '12 at 19:52
  • @MichaelMyers - You may have a better grip on the total number than I do, then. I have a hunch, though, that more than half have zero team championships. – pjmorse Dec 28 '12 at 20:38
4

There are 347 schools in NCAA Division 1. (This doesn't count "affiliate members" like RPI which are Division I in only one sport - hockey in RPI's case.)

I count 36 sports with team championships, so since 1973 there have been at most (40 x 36 = 1440) team titles on offer. In men's basketball, only 35 institutions have won titles in 74 years and I count 20 in the 40 years 1973-2012. Assuming a similar distribution in other sports (I count 14 teams in 30 years in women's basketball) would suggest 720 institutions winning titles if and only if no institution won in multiple sports; that's not a safe assumption either. Also, not all of the 36 sports have had 40 championships.

I sampled the list looking for national titles. Of the 20 programs listed under "A", only five (the Universities of Alabama, Arizona, and Arkansas, Arizona State University, and Auburn University) had won national team titles. (The University of Akron has a national title in a non-NCAA sport, archery.) This suggests that of the 347 schools, there are probably only about 87 with any team titles at all. That suggests to me that there are in the area of 260 programs with no national titles at all. I doubt the number is as high as 300, but I also doubt it is lower than 200.

The majority of the sample with any titles had several; the University of Arkansas, for example, in addition to one men's basketball title, has 40 across men's indoor and outdoor track and cross country.

If anyone wants to build a comprehensive list of title-less programs, start with the complete list of programs, then look through the sports and eliminate programs with wins. What's left is your list.

2
  • That's a lot more than I thought. I guess I was thinking only of "major" schools, so perhaps a follow-up for only FBS is needed. And the 1973 time limit is not for the championships, it's for the schools; it's any school which has been in Division 1 since at least 1973 and has won a top-division national title at any point (i.e. Princeton's 28 football championships count though none came after 1935). – Michael Myers Dec 29 '12 at 2:26
  • Based on what I've seen so far, the "Division 1 since 1973" is going to make more of a difference than opening up the time scale of championships. Of the 20 I considered above, the 15 with no titles have won none ever; however, many of the 15 are probably additions since 1973. (I didn't look for data on when they started in D1.) Certainly FBS programs are much more likely to have titles than non-FBS, so I agree that scope change would change the ratio. – pjmorse Dec 29 '12 at 12:02
1

Of the 40 recognized team championships, a total of one hundred and eighty universities (180) have won at least one division one championship, since 1890. Of those universities, twenty (20) are not currently division one schools - such as Chicago, which participated in division one sports until 1939 (football) and 1946 (most other sports), but won the 1938 Men's Gymnastics team title, and so is counted in that earlier list. So, 160 teams have won at least one national team championship that are currently in Division One. The actual number is likely smaller still due to teams that were added to Division One after 1973 and thereafter winning a team championship.

As there are over three hundred (300) universities that qualify as Division One schools for the period in question (I did not count exactly, but the current number is 357), there are a similar number of schools that have never won a team championship as have won a team championship.

The full list can be found on the NCAA website, as the Championship Summary. The list can also be derived from the Championship Year-By-Year Summary. It is not replicated here due to size.

One relevant piece of information, that might cause this number to be slightly inflated: the Football national champions from the FBS and the FCS are both included here. So, for example, Appalachian State is included in the list of "has won", due to their three FCS national titles. Many would not consider this to qualify as a Division 1 National Championship, but the NCAA does, so I include it here.

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I found a forum discussion that said there are 4 but only listed 2 of them:

KSU and Miss State. No idea who the other two are.

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  • 2
    Hey Jody, welcome to Sports SE. Can you link the forum you got the answer from? – alamoot Jan 13 at 2:04

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