Watch Highlights from the First Ever March Madness in 1939
While March Madness is now a multi-billion dollar affair that is perhaps second only to the Super Bowl in terms of mainstream sport interest, the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament in fact had a very humble beginning in 1939. It was just an eight-team tournament that played second fiddle to the NAIA Men’s Division I Basketball Tournament (which featured 32 teams, many of which were considered the best in the country).
The above video shows the 1939 West Regional Final between Oregon and Oklahoma, and the championship game between Ohio State and eventual champs Oregon. Jimmy Hull of Ohio State was named the tournament’s most outstanding player that year.