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Basketball – March Madness

March Madness 2014

Basketball – NCAA History

Dr. James Naismith

There are three special names for NCAA College Championship rounds (March Madness).

The tournament starts with sixty-four teams. After the 1st round  thirty-two teams remain.

The names begin on the 2nd round:

  • Sweet Sixteen (round 2)
  • Elite Eight (round 3)
  • Final Four (round 4)

At this stage the final two teams play for the NCAA Championship. It’s March Madness!

Basketball History

James Naismith
James Naismith

Dr. James Naismith is known world-wide as the inventor of basketball. He was born in 1861 in Ramsay township, near Almonte, Ontario, Canada. The concept of basketball was born from Naismith’s school days in the area where he played a simple child’s game known as duck-on-a-rock outside his one-room schoolhouse. The game involved attempting to knock a “duck” off the top of a large rock by tossing another rock at it. Naismith went on to attend McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Duck on the Rock

After serving as McGill’s Athletic Director, James Naismith moved on to the YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts, USA in 1891, where the sport of basketball was born. In Springfield, Naismith was faced with the problem of finding a sport that was suitable for play inside during the Massachusetts winter for the students at the School for Christian Workers.

December 21, 1891 First Game of Basketball Played in Springfield
December 21, 1891 First Game of Basketball Played in Springfield

Naismith wanted to create a game of skill for the students instead of one that relied solely on strength. He needed a game that could be played indoors in a relatively small space. The first game was played with a soccer ball and two peach baskets used as goals. Naismith joined the University of Kansas faculty in 1898, teaching physical education and being a chaplain.

The original 1891 Basket Ball court in Springfield College
The original 1891 Basket Ball court in Springfield College

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