16-seeded Fairleigh Dickinson upsets Purdue in NCAA Tournament

Unpacking the upheavals in March Madness so far

Major upset marks day one of NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament


Fairleigh Dickinson became the second No. 16 seed in history to win an NCAA Tournament game, stunning Purdue 63-58 behind 19 points from Sean Moore and a relentless, shoving defense on Friday night.

The shortest team in the tournament, the Knights (21-15) showed no fear as they swarmed 7-foot-4 All-America center Zach Edey early on. FDU’s players were quicker and calmer than the Big Ten champion Boilermakers (29-6).

Five years ago, UMBC led the way for the little guys by crushing Virginia in the first 16-to-1 victory after many close calls over the years. Still, the No. 16s had a 1-150 record before the FDU clash.

Fairleigh Dickinson vs. Purdue
Joe Munden Jr. #1 of the Fairleigh Dickinson Knights celebrates after defeating the Purdue Boilermakers 63-58 in the first round of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Nationwide Arena on March 17, 2023 in Columbus, Ohio.

Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Fairleigh Dickinson didn’t even win the Northeastern Conference tournament, dropping a point in the title game against Merrimack, who was barred from the NCAA tournament due to a rule of the NCAA barring him from the playoffs as he is still completing his four-year transition from Division II.

“The more I watch Purdue, the more I think we can beat them,” Fairleigh Dickinson head coach Tobin Anderson told his team Wednesday night after beating Texas Southern 84-61 in the first four to win the game against Purdue.

FDU held Purdue scoreless for more than 5 1/2 minutes on the stretch and moved up five on a 3-pointer from Moore with 1:03 left. The Knights held their ground from there, becoming the second straight double-digit seed to send the Boilermakers home. Purdue was a 3rd seed when it lost to 15th seed Saint Peter’s in the Sweet 16 last year.


Not all news on the site expresses the point of view of the site, but we transmit this news automatically and translate it through programmatic technology on the site and not from a human editor.
Back to top button