How Much Do You Know About UCLA Basketball?


By: John Miller

6 Min Quiz

Image: shutterstock

About This Quiz

When you think about sports dynasties, a few squads come to mind. In the NBA, the Boston Celtics and their 17 titles are the Mount Everest of hoops achievements. The Montreal Canadiens, although in a serious drought, have won an incredible 24 Stanley Cups. Nick Saban and his Alabama football team are on a seemingly eternal run of titles. And then, of course, there is the UCLA men’s basketball team. In our Bruins quiz, do you think you can nail all of our long-range UCLA questions?

UCLA started its team in 1919 and for years didn’t really make any sort of impression in the basketball world. The team couldn’t even manage a .500 overall record during its first couple of decades. But then the university hired a new coach, and suddenly, Bruins basketball became a thing. Do you know the name of the coach who made UCLA basketball worth watching?

The right coach made all the difference, and great talent helped, too. From Reggie Miller to Ed O’Bannon to Bill Walton, the Bruins have consistently landed some of the best high school recruits in the country. Tynus Edney, Kevin Love, Tracy Murray, and heaps of other stars have graced the Bruins’ hardwood at one point or another. Can name the team’s other heroes?

The stars truly aligned for UCLA in the mid-20th century, as the team embarked on an amazingly long run of top-notch success. Even blue bloods like Duke, North Carolina and Kentucky still fall short in terms of UCLA’s glittering history. Lace up those high tops and take our UCLA Bruins quiz now! Even if you’re a hoops history diehard, you may find that this team is even more incredible than you thought.

UCLA is a California school that plays basketball in which conference?

UCLA is a stalwart of the Pac-12 Conference, which features the likes of some other teams that are hardly worth mentioning. Because in historical terms, the Bruins own the Pac-12.


What's the name of UCLA's legendary coach of the 1960s and '70s?

College basketball is John Wooden. John Wooden is college basketball. In 1948, Wooden took the helm at UCLA and then went on a title run for the ages. It is highly unlikely that any men's college coach will ever match Wooden's successes.


What was John Wooden's nickname?

Wooden's coaching genius coaxed the best from his players, and his strategies almost always put the Bruins on the winning side of the scoreboard. He was the "Wizard of Westwood," a coach without equal.


Who is UCLA's current head coach?

Steve Alford was a standout player at Indiana in the '80s. In 2013, following a stint at New Mexico, he was hired as UCLA's head coach, where he's (so far) won a single conference championship.


How many national titles does UCLA have to its credit?

UCLA is the king of college hoops, with 11 national titles. Kentucky is second, with eight.


In 1967, the Bruins had an incredible year in large part thanks to center Lew Alcindor, who is better known as _____.

From 1966 to 1969, center Lew Alcindor -- better known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar -- led UCLA on an unprecedented run through the regular season. Funny glasses or no, Abdul-Jabbar went on to win six NBA titles with the Lakers.


UCLA is a powerhouse team that once won _____ consecutive national titles.

When sports dynasties come to mind, there really aren't many that can compare to UCLA's run of success in the '60s and '70s. That's when UCLA won seven -- yes, seven -- titles in a row. The rest of college basketball simply sat on its hands and waited for John Wooden to just die already.


True or false, is UCLA's dominating 88-game winning streak ('70-74) the longest in all of college basketball history?

For a while, UCLA's 88-game winning streak was the best ever. But starting in 2014, Uconn's women's team started a streak that didn't end until 111 games later.


How many times has UCLA gone undefeated?

Bruins haters can only roll their eyes and UCLA's undeniable greatness. In NCAA basketball history, only seven men's teams have gone undefeated. Four of those teams belonged to UCLA.


When was the last time UCLA won an NCAA title in men's basketball?

After an incredible run of 20th-century success, the Bruins are stuck in a very long drought. They haven't won the NCAA title since 1995.


UCLA won 10 national titles in just ____ years.

Talk about lack of suspense. In just 12 years, UCLA won the title 10 times. For the better part of a decade, college hoops' regular season was just a prelude to another Bruins title.


The Bruins won their last NCAA basketball title in 1995. Which team did they beat to claim the championship?

The 1995 UCLA team was a powerhouse. It lost just a single game that year, and finished off the season by beating Arkansas 89-78.


In 1968, UCLA was part of the "Game of the Century," the first regular-season NCAA game ever broadcast in prime time. Who did the Bruins play?

By 1968, UCLA's historic run was getting a bit ridiculous, and the team's popularity landed it a spot in the first regular-season game ever broadcast in prime time. They faced off against the Houston Cougars, a team that UCLA easily dispatched during the previous year's NCAA tournament.


In 1968, UCLA put its 47-game winning streak on the line in the "Game of the Century" versus the Houston Cougars. Which team won?

The Cougars battled UCLA to the end of the game, which was tied at 69 until Houston star Elvin Haynes made two free throws. Then, UCLA threw the ball away … and the Houston Cougars completed the amazing upset.


What was UCLA's 1967 record?

1967 marked UCLA's first undefeated season. The victories piled up, giving the Bruins a final record of 30-0 and of course, a national title.


Coach John Wooden was famous for his leadership skills and his "Pyramid of ______," which helped players live up to their full potential.

Wooden wasn't the rah-rah type, and unlike Bobby Knight, he didn't throw chairs in anger. His "Pyramid of Success" is still regarded as a blueprint for success in sports and life in general.


In 1971, UCLA lost a game to Notre Dame and then embarked on an 88-game winning streak. Which team finally broke the Bruins run?

Sometimes, cosmic forces align in strange ways. After suffering a 1971 loss to Notre Dame, UCLA rattled off 88 straight wins. Then, in 1974, the Bruins lost by a single point … to Notre Dame.


What's the nickname for the rabid student section at UCLA home games?

The student sections at UCLA games is "The Den." During highly anticipated home games, The Den is a wild and crazy section that erupts with joy at every Bruins basket.


UCLA lost star Lew Alcindor to graduation. Which player stepped into his place for the 1972 season?

In 1972, Alcindor passed the torch to Bill Walton, who was a sophomore. Walton anchored the court and helped the Bruins go undefeated again, with a 30-0 record and another title.


In 2015, the Bruins made it to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA tournament. There, they lost to which squad?

Steve Alford pushed his Bruins to the 2015 Sweet Sixteen. But UCLA's overachieving season came to an end against Gonazaga, a number-2 seed, which won 74-62.


Other than John Wooden, who is the only UCLA coach to lead the Bruins to a national title?

Jim Harrick coached UCLA from 1988 to 1996, and for the moment, he's the school's third-winningest coach. He led the Bruins to their 11th and most recent title in 1995.


Which former UCLA player also became the team's head coach?

Walt Hazzard was a standout Bruins player on the team that won the 1964 title. Two decades later, he returned as head coach and helped the team win a single NIT title, but was later fired when the Bruins slipped toward mediocrity.


In 2008, UCLA reached the Final Four but lost to ______.

In 2008, UCLA lost to Memphis in the Final Four by a score of 78-63. There was no shame in losing that game -- the Tigers were the first team ever to win 38 games in a season.


UCLA has won 11 national titles. Coach John Wooden is responsible for how many of those titles?

Wooden led UCLA to 10 titles during his tenure at UCLA, which spanned from 1948 to 1975. Prior to UCLA, he coached at Indiana State, where he won exactly zero national titles.


Which star Bruins player wore the number 0 during his playing days?

Russell Westbrook played two seasons with UCLA, and both years, the team made it to the Final Four. But number 0 also won zero titles with the Bruins before he departed for the NBA and became a star.


In 2003, head coach Steven Lavin was fired after recording UCLA's first losing season in _____ years.

Lavin was actually a pretty good coach but he couldn't push his teams over the top, and in 2003, the bottom fell out. He was fired after 10-19 season, the school's first losing record in 55 years.


How long did John Wooden coach at UCLA before notching his first undefeated season?

Wooden spent a good chunk of his life pursuing perfection. After 16 years, his Bruins seized their first unbeaten season. After that, the undefeated seasons simply seemed to fall out of the sky, landing in UCLA's lap with regularity.


Just before the 2017-18 season, the Bruins traveled to China for the annual Pac-12 China Game. What happened?

During the trip, three players were arrested for shoplifting items from a local store. The incident gained worldwide headlines and resulted in long suspensions, and certainly impacted the team's performance during the season.


With Steve Alford as coach, what's the furthest the Bruins have advanced in the NCAA tournament?

Alford's been coach since 2013 and has already found good success at UCLA. He's led the team to two Sweet 16 appearances, including an unlikely run from the 11-seed slot in the 2015 tournament.


UCLA has a long-standing rivalry with Notre Dame. Which team has more wins in the series?

Notre Dame has foiled UCLA's plans on more than one occasion. But as of 2018, UCLA holds the series edge, 28-20.


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