The Final Four slate has been set, and it features two teams that haven’t made it to this stage of the NCAA Tournament in decades.
Houston, the No. 2 seed in the Midwest Region, will take on Baylor, the South Region’s No. 1 seed, on Saturday in one national semifinal. Then No. 11 UCLA will take on top seed Gonzaga in the other semifinal Saturday. The winners of the Final Four games will play in the national championship game — the first since the 2019-20 season.
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Here’s everything you need to know about Saturday’s Final Four matchups, including times, dates, location, odds and more:
Who is in the Final Four in 2021?
- Houston (Midwest Region champion)
- Baylor (South Region champion)
- Gonzaga (West Region champion)
- UCLA (East Region champion)
Houston was the first team to punch its Final Four ticket with a nail-biting 67-61 victory over 12-seed Oregon State on Monday. The Cougars had a 17-point lead that dwindled to a tie before putting the clamps on the Beavers and winning by six. Baylor was similarly challenged against Arkansas before the Razorbacks experienced a significant scoring drought and Baylor pulled away in an eventual 81-72 victory.
On the other side of the bracket, No. 1 Gonzaga and No. 11 UCLA advanced in completely different manners. The Bulldogs were efficient and seemingly unstoppable on both sides of the ball, wrecking No. 6 USC 85-66 in the West Region final. UCLA, however, had to grind out yet another instant-classic win, this time 51-49 over 1-seed Michigan. The two teams will meet in the Final Four.
Final Four odds, lines, spreads
Houston (No. 2, Midwest) vs. Baylor (No. 1, South)
- Spread: Baylor -5
- Over/under: 135.5
- Moneyline: Baylor -220, Houston +180
UCLA (No. 11, East) vs. Gonzaga (No. 1, West)
Spread: Gonzaga -13.5
This section will be updated.
When & where is the Final Four?
The 2021 NCAA Tournament ends with the Final Four and national championship on April 3 and 5, respectively. All games will take place at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis on the site’s two courts, named “Equality” and “Unity” to recognize the NCAA’s commitment to inclusion and social justice.
Below is the TV schedule for the Final Four:
|Game 65: No. 1 Baylor 78, No. 2 Houston 59|
|Game 66: No. 1 Gonzaga 93, No. 11 UCLA 90 (OT)|
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How many times has Houston been to the Final Four?
The Cougars had been to the Final Four five times prior to their 2021 berth, all before the start of the expanded bracket era: in 1967, 1968 and 1982-84. The latter three were Guy V. Lewis’ famed “Phi Slama Jama” teams. None of the teams won the tournament, with the Cougars finishing as runner-up in 1983 and ’84. The closest the program has come to the Final Four since was in 2019 when Kelvin Sampson took the team to the Sweet 16.
Below is a rundown of each of the Cougars’ Final Four appearances, as well as the final result from the respective tournaments:
|1967||Houston 84, North Carolina 62 (national third-place game)|
|1968||Ohio State 89, Houston 85 (national third-place game)|
|1982||North Carolina 68, Houston 63 (Final Four)|
|1983||N.C. State 54, Houston 52 (national championship)|
|1984||Georgetown 84, Houston 75 (national championship)|
|2021||Baylor 78, Houston 59 (Final Four)|
How many times has Baylor been to the Final Four?
Baylor will make its third Final Four appearance on Saturday, and its first since 1950. Prior to that, the team’s only other appearance in the Final Four was in 1948. The Bears had come close, making it to the Sweet 16 in 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2017 and the Elite Eight in 2010 and 2012.
Here’s how Baylor’s previous Final Four appearances played out:
|1948||Kentucky 58, Baylor 32 (national championship)|
|1950||N.C. State 53, Baylor 41 (national third-place game)|
|2021||vs. Gonzaga (national title game)|
How many times has Gonzaga been to the Final Four?
Gonzaga has only made one Final Four prior to 2021. The first came in 2017 when Mark Few led the program to its first such berth in the history of the program. The Bulldogs (30-0) now have the chance at perfection, the only goal left that is worth achieving this season.
Here’s how Gonzaga’s previous trip to the Final Four went down:
|2017||North Carolina 71, Gonzaga 65 (national championship)|
|2021||vs. Baylor (national title game)|
How many times has UCLA been to the Final Four?
UCLA might have the longest odds of the 2021 Final Four teams to win the national championship, but their pedigree is certainly far beyond any other team still playing in March Madness. With their 2021 berth, the Bruins have now been to an absurd 19 Final Fours, including the team’s vacated 1980 final.
Legendary coach John Wooden led the team to 12 Final Four berths from 1962 to 1975, including nine straight from 1967 through ’75. The team has made six since, including three straight under coach Ben Howland in 2006, ’07 and ’08. Here’s a look at the Bruins’ illustrious Final Four history:
|1962||Wake Forest 82, UCLA 80 (national third-place game)|
|1964||UCLA 98, Duke 83 (national championship)|
|1965||UCLA 91, Michigan 80 (national championship)|
|1967||UCLA 79, Dayton 64 (national championship)|
|1968||UCLA 78, North Carolina 55 (national championship)|
|1969||UCLA 92, Purdue 72 (national championship)|
|1970||UCLA 80, Jacksonville 69 (national championship)|
|1971||UCLA 68, Villanova 62 (national championship)|
|1972||UCLA 81, Florida State 76 (national championship)|
|1973||UCLA 87, Memphis 66 (national championship)|
|1974||UCLA 78, Kansas 61 (national third-place game)|
|1975||UCLA 82, Kentucky 85 (national championship)|
|1976||UCLA 106, Rutgers 92 (national third-place game)|
|1980||Louisville 59, UCLA 54 (national championship)|
|1995||UCLA 89, Arkansas 78 (national championship)|
|2006||Florida 73, UCLA 57 (national championship)|
|2007||Florida 76, UCLA 66 (Final Four)|
|2008||Memphis 78, UCLA 64 (Final Four)|
|2021||Gonzaga 93, UCLA 90 (OT) (Final Four)|