This week we learned that Henry Winkler, a.k.a. The Fonz, is a Wichita State Shockers fan. So that got us thinking. What other celebrity fans will be cheering teams on in the Sweet 16?
Well, we did some digging and found celebrity fans for every team left in the 2015 NCAA Tournament. And now we’re going to re-seed the whole thing accordingly.
Of course, it was easier to find celebrity fans for some teams than it was for others. Everybody knows about Kentucky superfan Ashley Judd, especially after the Dick Vitale incident. But teams like Utah and Xavier were a lot harded to figure out.
We did it, though. So come on in and see who takes the top spot.
We couldn't do a list about celebrity college basketball fans and not talk about Leonardo DiCaprio. However, we also couldn't use him for any one team since he is clearly a fan of dozens of teams—including Louisville, Notre Dame, West Virginia, and UClA, who make up 25% of this year's Sweet 16. So we're giving him an honorable mention.
Nice hat collection, Leo.
Honrable Mention: Leonardo DiCaprio
Okay, so we couldn't find any hard evidence that Steve Harvey is, in fact, a West Virginia Mountaineers fan. However, he is from West Virginia. And although we don't know if he graduated, we know Harvey attended West Virginia University. So you have to assume that if Steve Harvey is a basketball fan and he's following the NCAA Tournament at all, he must be pulling for the Mountaineers.
16. Steve Harvey – West Virginia
Chris Farley was a huge Wisconsin fan but, sadly, he's been dead for almost 20 years. And while Frank Kaminsky made a solid effort to convert Will Ferrell, the funny man declined to get on board the Badger bandwagon. Thus, the best we could do for Wisconsin is former pro golfer Andy North, who hails from Monona, Wisconsin.
North is not exactly a superstar, having won just three PGA Tour events his entire career. However, two of those wins came at the U.S. Open, which is pretty amazing.
15. Andy North – Wisconsin
The Utah Utes were one of the hardest teams for which to find a celebrity fan. However, in the end we came up Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith. He didn't just go to Utah, he actually graduated from the university with a degree in economics. Since then he's maintained close ties to his alma mater. They even had him deliver the commencement address to the class of 2014, at which time they awarded him an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters.
So yeah, he's still a pretty big Utah fan.
14. Alex Smith – Utah
That's right. John Boehner, Speaker of the United States House of Representatives John Boehner, one of the most powerful people in Washington—whose name I still pronounce it "Boner" even though I know better—went to Xavier.
As you can tell from this photo, neither his long career in politics nor his orange spray tan have diluted his passion for Muskateers basketball. Once an X-Man, always an X-Man.
13. John Boehner – Xavier
I thought it would be really easy to find celebrity fans for the most successful basketball program of all time that just so happens to be located where 75% of celebrities actually live. However, turns out most celebrities are really flaky sports fans. (See the slide about Mr. DiCaprio.)
One celeb who's not flaky is TV star Mayim Bialik. Between her stints on Blossom and Big Bang Theory, she went to UCLA, earning a B.S. and a Ph.D. in neuroscience. So her love of the Bruins? It's legit.
12. Miyam Bialik – UCLA
Hall of Fame NBA point guard John Stockton went to Gonzaga and is still basically the face of the program. However, that's not the only reason he's still a Zags fan. His son David, who is now in the D-League, played for Gonzaga from 2010 through 2014.
Obviously, it was a rather intense time for dad.
11. John Stockton – Gonzaga
Where possibly, we tried not to pick people who actually played for a given team as their biggest celebrity fans. However, that wasn't possible for our previous entry, which is why we went with Stockton. But it is possible for Michigan State. So instead of Michigan State alum Magic Johnson, we're going with All-American Badass Kid Rock.
10. Kid Rock – Michigan State
This one was a bit of a toss-up between Regis Philbin and Vince Vaughn. On the one hand, Philbin has been Notre Dame's most vocal celebrity fan for about 40 years, and he actually went there. But, on the other hand, Vince Vaughn is a little more culturally relevant. So we went with Vaughn.
So how did Vaughn become a fan of the Irish?
Well, it could be proximity. South Bend is only an hour and a half away from Vaughn's hometown of Chicago, and there are lots of Fighting Irish fans in the Windy City.
However, it could just as easily have been the small part as Jamie O'Hare in the classic sports film Rudy.
9. Vince Vaughn – Notre Dame
Duke probably has lots of celebrity fans. However, I went with San Diego native and Eastern Illinois alum Tony Romo because I hate the Dallas Cowboys and Duke Blue Devils, so I think they belong together.
8. Tony Romo – Duke
Henry Winkler was brilliant as Barry Zuckercorn on Arrested Development. However, to me he'll always be Arthur Fonzarelli, a.k.a. Fonzie, a.k.a. The Fonz.
In any case, as mentioned in the introduction and as you can clearly see here, The Fonz is a recent convert to Shocker Nation. He just needs to work on the hand gesture a bit still so he doesn't injure somebody.
7. The Fonz – Wichita State
Sure, we could have gone with Drake here. But let's be honest—it's hard to take that guy seriously when it comes to sports teams. Instead, we went with Ashley Judd. She grew up in Kentucky, she went to the University of Kentucky, and she's at pretty much every game. She is as die-hard as they come.
6. Ashley Judd – Kentucky
Kristen Wiig didn't graduate from Arizona, but she did drop out from Arizona so she could move to LA and become an actor...which obviously worked out pretty well.
Unfortunately, we couldn't find any evidence that Wiig is still an Arizona Wildcats fan. However, she has been spotted at NBA basketball games, so we're thinking she probably roots for her would-be alma mater every March.
5. Kristin Wiig – Arizona
Do you know how hard it is to find somebody from North Carolina who's not either a UNC fan or a Duke fan? That's a rhetorical question, but I'll answer it anyway: very hard.
However, after we were about to go with NC State's most famous basketball alum, Tom Gugliotta, we came across this photo. So we did a big more research and learned, yep, Zach Galifianakis is a HUGE fan of the Wolfpack—at which point we realized that whole "wolfpack" thing from the Hangover movies wasn't just random nonsense.
In any case, according to an interview Galifianakis did with the NC State News, his dad was a Wolfpack fan, so he was a Wolfpack fan growing up. Then he actually went to NC State for four years but finished just one credit shy of graduating.
4. Zach Galifianakis – NC State
I don't know if supermodal Brooklyn Decker is North Carolina's most famous celebrity fan. But she's definitely the hottest.
In fact, I know you're probably disappointed that we used this photo and not, say, a photo of her in a skimpy bikini. So here, look at this. Or this. Or while we're at it, this.
3. Brooklyn Decker – North Carolina
That's right everybody, Olivia Munn is a Sooner! Born and raised in Oklahoma City, Munn attended and graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in journalism, Japanese, and drama.
Fortunately, her college allegiance shouldn't cause any problems between Munn and her boyfriend. Aaron Rodgers went to Cal, not exactly one of OU's traditional rivals.
2. Olivia Munn – Oklahoma
Taking the top seed is Jennifer Lawrence.
Star of pretty much everything—but especially The Hunger Games and X-Men—J-Law was born and raised in Louisville. She didn't actually go to college, of course, because she's too hot and good at acting for that sort of thing. But if she did go to college, she probalby would have gone to Louisville, because she's a huge Cardinals fan as you can see from this photo (and others).