EURweb– Led by one of a dying breed in college basketball, a NBA-worthy point guard who stayed in school for his senior year, Connecticut toppled a Kentucky team that had cornered the market on teenage talent to claim the school’s fourth NCAA championship on Monday.
Senior Shabazz Napier (pictured) did nearly everything for his Huskies at AT&T Stadium, scoring a game-high 22 points, directing the offense and controlling the tempo in Connecticut’s 60-54 victory before a NCAA championship-record crowd of 79,238 that included past presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton looking on as giddy seatmates from a luxury box.
It was Connecticut’s fourth national title in the last 15 years and its least probable. The Huskies became the lowest seed, at No. 7, to win the national championship since Villanova in 1985. And their triumph followed a one-year ban from the postseason because it had fallen short of the NCAA’s minimal academic standards. “This is what happens when you ban us!” a jubilant Napier said into a TV camera as confetti rained around him, explaining later that the Huskies hadn’t been driven by revenge so much as hunger.