NCAA Championship: Villanova wins second national title in three years
- Author: Gwendolyn Kim Apr 05, 2018,
Apr 05, 2018, 0:48
There was no denying Villanova.
Washington, a MI basketball assistant coach, returned home Tuesday after the Wolverines' 79-62 national championship loss to Villanova.
When parity had been the story over the last three weeks, Villanova won all six tournament games by double digits.
The Wildcats' recipe for success: Don't be shy about shooting the basketball, especially from deep. Coach Jay Wright and Villanova didn't have to wait very long for another one. "Rather than come to college saying I want to get out as soon as I can". "I never dreamed of this", Wright told TBS television.
Trailing Michigan 21-14 with 10:59 remaining in the first half, it was time for someone to give Villanova a boost. He would go on to provide 18 points off the bench in just 18 first half minutes. Isaiah Livers was down a ways, isolated from the rest of his team. The sophomore came off the bench and scored a career high 31 points in their title win against MI but while the game was going on, tweets from DiVincenzo's dormant Twitter account resurfaced with tweets that contained the n-word. Wright admits he'd like a few more five-star players in his program, but not at the risk of ruining what he has established. "I guess I wasn't as aggressive anymore".
"I just have the best job in the country".
Players on the MI bench watch during the second half in the championship game of the Final Four against Villanova on Monday in San Antonio.
The Wildcats, as they showed throughout the year, have so many different dynamics and so many weapons that it is impossible to game plan for just the triple.
Michigan's starters trudged to the bench in tired succession, watching with towel-covered heads in their hands while the waning minutes of the NCAA Tournament championship game dropped away. Like their Final Four matchup with Kansas, they would not stop.
The last team to win its two Final Four games by 16 or more: UCLA in 1968.
Three months ago, the Wolverines were unranked in the AP poll. The game needed the example of Loyola Chicago to restore the charm of amateurism during this tournament, but it was desperate for a team with the characteristics of Villanova to win the whole thing. Senior guard Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman had 23 points.
Every time MI did show signs of making a run, it was answered immediately. "Credit Villanova in both respects. They're a really good team defensively and when they play like that, they're tough to beat". Everybody talks about their offense. "I think all of those things - the injuries, the losses - helped us get to this point". "They jumped on us, and I should have known better with John". Their progress could be crucial in helping the Wolverines replace whoever they end up losing. And that was going to be important tonight. MI had lost star point guard Derrick Walton from the previous season.
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