Is Kentucky’s Current CBB Title Drought Among Longest In History?

Is Kentucky’s Current CBB Title Drought Among Longest In History?
Fact Checked by Nate Hamilton

It’s been more than a decade since either of Kentucky’s two biggest men’s basketball brands last hoisted a national championship trophy, which is among the longest droughts both teams have faced in recent years. Between the Kentucky Wildcats, who last won it all in 2011-12, and the Louisville Cardinals, who did the same in 2012-13, it’s been 25 seasons of basketball combined in the Bluegrass State with zero titles to show for it.  

This year, oddsmakers from Caesars Sportsbook Kentucky seem pretty confident that John Calipari’s squad can snap that streak, with the Wildcats sitting in a tie for the second-lowest title odds in the nation (alongside Purdue and Duke) at +1200, just behind the No. 1 Kansas Jayhawks (+1100). It’s a good thing for the state that Kentucky’s so highly ranked, because the Cardinals are slotted in at +15000 to win their first title in 13 years next spring, which puts them alongside such teams as Western Carolina, Cal State Fullerton, Bucknell, and North Florida.  

To get a sense of where the Bluegrass State’s current MBB title drought stacks up, used our Kentucky sports betting mindset and broke down the numbers on where the current 25-season figure ranks in the program’s rich basketball history.  

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How UK’s & Louisville's Droughts Stack Up as Longest in KY History

The data below can help you if you are interested in how often Kentucky college basketball teams win championships. Be sure to go through for the best Kentucky betting apps.

Team Drought Years Drought Total
Louisville 1939-1980 41 years
Louisville 1986-2013 27 years
UK 1959-1977 18 years
UK 1979-1995 16 years
UK 1999-2011 12 years

Where Current MBB Title Drought Ranks

The current 25-season figure between Kentucky and Louisville pales in comparison to the gap in titles the state went through, between when the Wildcats won it all in 1958 and 1978. During those 40 seasons (between the two schools), neither school was able to cut down the nets, with Louisville’s championship drought running from 1939 to 1980, while Kentucky’s lasted as long as the duration mentioned above.  

While the Cardinals would have a much smaller gap after that, winning it all again in 1986, both schools failed to cut down the nets again until the Wildcats did so in 1996 (and 1997), which was the last championship won by either until Kentucky did so in 2012. Louisville followed that up with a title of their own in 2012-13, though neither has been able to get back atop the sport’s tallest pedestal since, with the Cardinals making it to the Elite Eight in 2015. The Wildcats have reached the title game once (2014) and the Final Four twice (2014 and 2015) in that interim period.  

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Christopher Boan is a staff writer for He has covered sports and sports betting for more than seven years and has worked for publications such as, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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