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50 in 50 rankings: No. 6 Louisville

8/24/2012

Editor's note: Using a point system devised by the ESPN Stats & Information department, ESPN.com is counting down the 50 most successful programs of the past 50 years. A running list of the top 50 can be found here. For an explanation of the scoring system, read our intro. If you disagree with the order -- and we're sure you do -- re-arrange our Top 25 here. Oh, and if your team didn't crack the top 50, click here to see where they rank among their peers.

6. Louisville (547 points)

Positives: Won a pair of national titles in the 1980s; also made six other Final Fours; 21 regular-season conference titles; five first-team consensus All-Americans; nine top-10 picks.

Negatives: Lost 10 points due to sanctions; hasn't reached the national championship game in 26 years; had an eight-year stretch without a conference title (1996-03).

Fun fact: Louisville received negative points in just three of the 50 seasons in this study.

Rank by the decade

1962-69: 48 (19th)

1970-79: 116 (8th)

1980-89: 194 (3rd)

1990-99: 75 (23rd)

2000-present: 114 (19th)

50 in 50 starting five (1962-present)

G – Darrell Griffith (1976-80)

G – DeJuan Wheat (1993-97)

F – Rodney McCray (1979-83)

F/C – Pervis Ellison (1985-89)

C – Wes Unseld (1965-68)

Top options off the bench

Butch Beard (1966-69)

Derek Smith (1979-82)

Milt Wagner (1981-86)

50 in 50 coach: Denny Crum (1971-2001)

Best teams (1962-present)

1979-80 (33-3, NCAA national champions)

1982-83 (32-4, NCAA national semifinals)

1985-86 (32-7, NCAA national champions)

--Harold Shelton and Brett Edgerton contributed to this post