Basketball in Columbus
Home to the 2024 DIII Women's Basketball Championship and 2027 Women's Final Four, Columbus is rich in hoops history.
Two overtime thrillers and a buzzer-beater decided the 2018 Final Four. We're running it back in 2027.
Columbus is hosting the 2024 Championship on March 14-16
Nationwide Arena has hosted the First & Second Rounds of NCAA Men's March Madness fives times since 2005.
In 2020, TBT brought 24 teams to Columbus for the first ‘bubble’ sports event during the pandemic.
- Columbus hosts the NCAA Women's Final Four in 2027.
- Columbus native Georgeann Wells became the first woman to dunk in an NCAA game when she did it for West Virginia University in 1984.
- The city of Columbus is home to 20 NBA players over the league’s history. Of those 20, seven stayed in Columbus to play collegiately at Ohio State University. Three Columbus-born players have played in the WNBA.
- Columbus has the third-most boys participants in high school boys & girls basketball despite being the seventh-largest state
- Capital University, in Bexley, Ohio on Columbus’ east side, is home of back-to-back national championships for NCAA Division III women’s basketball. The first time the feat was accomplished.
The team started play in 1965, coached by women’s sports pioneer Phyliss Bailey. Two of the top 10 winningest coaches in NCAA women's basketball history coached the Buckeyes – Tara VanDerveer and Jim Foster.
The Buckeyes have made 11 Final Fours and won the NCAA Championship in 1960. Notable players include Jim Jackson, Jerry Lucas, John Havlicek, Greg Oden, D’Angelo Russell, Scoonie Penn, Michael Redd Evan Turner and Mike Conley, Jr.
Although the league only lasted two and a half years, the women’s pro team won the only two league titles, led by Central Ohioan Katie Smith. Many stars from the Quest moved to the WNBA after the league folded in Dec. 1998.
If you want a taste of professional basketball, the Columbus Condors are your team. The Condors play just outside of the city, in Westerville. Since 2016, the Condors compete against other teams from across the country in The Basketball League.
Several Columbus high schools assemble girls teams, just six years after basketball was invented
Ohio State’s men’s team begins playing
Ohio State’s men’s team wins the NCAA Championship
Ohio State’s women’s team wins its first of 16 (as of 2022) regular season Big Ten championships
Katie Smith and the Buckeyes make the NCAA Championship, falling to Texas Tech
Capital University’s women’s team wins back to back DIII National Championships
The Columbus Quest win its second straight ABL Championship
Ohio State’s men’s team makes the NCAA Championship, falling to Florida. Two players from that team – Greg Oden and Mike Conley – are selected with the top four picks in the NBA draft