The elite eight in basketball is the Regional Championships. This means the remaining two teams in each region face off against each other to earn a spot in the final four. There are four games in the elite eight stage. The elite eight is the 4th round of the tournament. This means that each team in the elite eight is 3-0 in the tournament, heading into the game.
At the start of the tournament there are 16 teams in each region. By the elite eight, there are just two teams in each region.
The lowest seed to ever qualify for an elite eight was a 12 seed. In 2002, Missouri upset Miami, Ohio State, and UCLA en route to an elite eight appearance. Missouri's Cinderella story came to a close in the elite eight, losing to the 2 seeded Oklahoma.
On average, three number one seeds make the elite eight each year. There are only four one seeds each year, so only one number one seed typically is eliminated before the elite eight. This shows the extreme dominance of top seeds.
If a team makes the elite eight, they are half way to winning a national championship. The tournament in total lasts for six rounds. To make the elite eight, a team must survive three rounds: the round of 64, the round of 32, and the sweet 16. However, each round is harder than the one before!