1956 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament
|1956 NCAA Men's Division I
|Finals site||McGaw Hall
|Champions||San Francisco (2nd title)|
|Runner-up||Iowa (1st title game)|
|Semifinalists||SMU (1st Final Four)
Temple (1st Final Four)
|Winning coach||Phil Woolpert (2nd title)|
|MOP||Hal Lear Temple|
|Top scorer||Hal Lear Temple
The 1956 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament involved 25 schools playing in single-elimination play to determine the national champion of men's NCAA Division I college basketball. It began on March 12, 1956, and ended with the championship game on March 24 on Northwestern University's campus in Evanston, Illinois. A total of 29 games were played, including a third-place game in each region and a national third-place game.
This was the first NCAA tournament in which the four regionals were given distinct names, although the concept of four regional winners advancing to a single site for the "Final Four" had been introduced in 1952.
San Francisco, coached by Phil Woolpert, won the national title with an 83–71 victory in the final game over Iowa, coached by Bucky O'Connor. Hal Lear of Temple was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player.
|East||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania||New York City, New York|
|Far West||Corvallis, Oregon||Seattle, Washington|
|Midwest||Iowa City, Iowa||Fort Wayne, Indiana|
|West||Lawrence, Kansas||Wichita, Kansas|
|East||n/a||Canisius||Joseph Curran||Regional Runner-up||Temple||L 60-58|
|East||n/a||Connecticut||Hugh Greer||Regional Fourth Place||Dartmouth||L 85-64|
|East||n/a||Dartmouth||Doggie Julian||Regional Third Place||Connecticut||W 85-64|
|East||n/a||Holy Cross||Roy Leenig||First round||Temple||L 74-72|
|East||n/a||Manhattan||Ken Norton||First round||Connecticut||L 84-75|
|East||n/a||North Carolina State||Everett Case||First round||Canisius||L 79-78|
|East||n/a||Temple||Harry Litwack||Third Place||SMU||W 90-81|
|East||n/a||West Virginia||Fred Schaus||First round||Dartmouth||L 61-59|
|Far West||n/a||Idaho State||Steve Belko||First round||Seattle||L 68-66|
|Far West||n/a||San Francisco||Phil Woolpert||Champion||Iowa||W 83-71|
|Far West||n/a||Seattle||Al Brightman||Regional Fourth Place||UCLA||L 94-70|
|Far West||n/a||UCLA||John Wooden||Regional Third Place||Seattle||W 94-70|
|Far West||n/a||Utah||Jack Gardner||Regional Runner-up||San Francisco||L 92-77|
|Midwest||n/a||DePaul||Ray Meyer||First round||Wayne State||L 72-63|
|Midwest||n/a||Iowa||Bucky O'Connor||Runner Up||San Francisco||L 83-71|
|Midwest||n/a||Kentucky||Adolph Rupp||Regional Runner-up||Iowa||L 89-77|
|Midwest||n/a||Marshall||Jule Rivlin||First round||Morehead State||L 107-92|
|Midwest||n/a||Morehead State||Bobby Laughlin||Regional Third Place||Wayne State||W 95-84|
|Midwest||n/a||Wayne State||Joel Mason||Regional Fourth Place||Morehead State||L 95-84|
|West||n/a||Houston||Alden Pasche||Regional Fourth Place||Kansas State||L 89-70|
|West||n/a||Kansas State||Tex Winter||Regional Third Place||Houston||W 89-70|
|West||n/a||Memphis State||Eugene Lambert||First round||Oklahoma City||L 97-81|
|West||n/a||Oklahoma City||Abe Lemons||Regional Runner-up||SMU||L 84-63|
|West||n/a||SMU||Doc Hayes||Fourth Place||Temple||L 90-81|
|West||n/a||Texas Tech||Polk Robison||First round||SMU||L 68-67|
* – Denotes overtime period
Far West Region
|National Semifinals||National Championship Game|
- Canisius's first-round victory over the second-ranked North Carolina State Wolfpack, considered by many to be among the top ten upsets in tournament history, set a record for most overtime periods in a Division I Men's tournament game with four, a record that still stands as of 2009 (tied once, in 1961).
- Northwestern University previously hosted the first ever NCAA Men's Basketball Championship game on March 27, 1939 in the first Patten Gym.
- Top 25 Upsets in NCAA Tournament History--#5, Prepticket.com. Accessed 2009-04-02. Archived 2009-05-04.
- The Sports Network. "The Sports Network - Men's College Basketball". Archived from the original on 2009-05-04. Retrieved 2009-04-02.
- 1939 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament