It's my favorite time of the year when I get to watch four days straight of basketball with my Dad and friends and my productivity falls through the floor. That's why this article is being written: basketball is all I can think about.


Each year I take a walk down memory lane and watch compilations of insane upsets and buzzer beaters that make my eyes water and/or my heart pound, and if making an article about my favorite games is an excuse to watch clips at work, then this is a no brainer.


The NCAA has an exhaustive list of buzzer beaters that you can view here, but this list will personally be the shots that have blown me away in my lifetime. Without further ado, here are my favorite March Madness buzzer-beaters:


2010: Michigan State vs Maryland

Starting things off with the first buzzer-beater that I remember seeing live, we had Michigan State vs Maryland in 2010 where my dad cheered so loud he lost his voice. This MSU team featured a very green Draymond Green team that went all the way to the Final Four, but it took this last-second shot by Korie Lucious to get them there.



2016: Wisconsin vs Xavier

2016 was an absolutely insane year for buzzer-beaters, and it all started with this one from Wisconsin. There's a lot to like about this clip. The shot that Bronson Koenig made was an insanely impossible shot to hit: a quick spin-around shot, well-defended from the corner, with no time to set up the shot. Yet he hits it anyway, and the cameras immediately find a very sad-looking Bill Murray in the stands. Poor guy.




2016: Northern Iowa vs Texas

The reason this buzzer beater sticks out to me isn't just the range at which Northern Iowa's Paul Jesperson shoots the ball, but it is the cheeky little crossover he does to beat two defenders and then shoots over a third to upset #6 Texas.



2018: Loyola Chicago vs Miami

In a 2018 tournament that saw the first #16 seed win a game, this upset stuck out. Loyola Chicago's Final Four run as an 11 seed was memorable for so many reasons: they squeaked out their first 3 games by a combined total of four points. This one is for you, Sister Jean.



Virginia 2019

The next two buzzer-beaters are from Virginia's redemption era. A year suffering the largest upset in March Madness history, the Cavaliers pulled off some magic of their own with two back-to-back games that relied on buzzer-beater shots to carry them to the Championship. The first clip is a total breakdown of a play that results in a bullet pass from half-court and a quick shot from Mamdi Diakite to force overtime.



This next clip isn't technically a buzzer-beater, but Virginia squeaked out a win against Auburn after being fouled on a 3-point shot as time expired, giving Virginia three free throws that Kyle Guy made look like he could have made in his sleep. They went on to win the Championship this year.



2021: UCLA vs Gonzaga

Gonzaga's Drew Timme era was marked with dominance on every level, except for where it counted: the NCAA tournament. Despite their continued success, they could not claim a National Championship. Then came the UCLA vs Gonzaga Final Four match, arguably one of the best games of all time, where an on-fire 11 seed UCLA was beaten at the buzzer by Jalen Suggs' clutch three. Sadly, their only loss of the entire season came against Baylor in the championship game.



2016: Villanova vs North Carolina

As I said, 2016 was an insane year for buzzer-beaters, so it was only fitting that the 2016 tournament ended with one of the best buzzer-beaters in tournament history. Villanova pulled off something that would have fit right into a movie. With just under 5 seconds, the Wildcats ran the length of the floor and sunk a shot at the top of the arc as time expired. The confetti going off as the ball went in was icing on the cake.



Honorable Mention: Butler vs Duke

While this shot didn't go in from half-court, it was so ridiculously close that everyone remembers it to this day. I was watching this game at my cousin's house and I remember all of us gasping as the ball bounced off the rim and nearly sent home Duke, who were just always annoyingly good. To see them nearly upset by a 6 seed underdog like Butler was almost too good to be true.



Where Are These Michigan State Basketball Players Now?

Tom Izzo and the Michigan State Spartans Men's Basketball program have been a premier school in College Basketball, with a streak of 25 straight NCAA tournament appearances. Stellar teams generate stellar players, and over the years, MSU has had no shortage of stand-out players who have gone on to have successful careers in professional basketball. Here are 12 Spartans in the last 12 years and where they are now.

Gallery Credit: Tommy McNeill

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