Connecticut will not ride a one-man gang into the national championship game this time.
The Gators have won all 30 games they’ve played since a loss at Connecticut on Dec. 2. The teams meet again today in the Final Four. They both have changed and they both have stayed the same.
Three years ago, Connecticut won the national championship. Shabazz Napier was a freshman on that team. So too was Roscoe Smith.
Bad weather in Dallas gave the sports media world something to focus their gripes on. It really could have been anything, though.
Cinderella stayed home. Forget that Kentucky is an 8 seed and Connecticut a 7. Of those teams that have advanced to the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament, all are major programs and three have won multiple national championships.
It’s easy to paint John Calipari as a con artist. He’s slick and perceived as shady, a reputation earned through great recruiting. The Kentucky coach runs an NBA farm team on a college campus.
In retrospect, some events are truly unbelievable, such as an airplane disappearing without a trace. It went against the odds, but Shabazz Napier knocking out Michigan State is not that hard to believe.
Aaron Harrison made a 3-pointer from NBA range with 2.3 seconds left Sunday to lift Kentucky and its freshmen to a 75-72 win over Michigan and a trip to the Final Four.
Shabazz Napier sure did that Sunday, carrying UConn back to the Final Four in front of thousands of roaring Huskies fans at Madison Square Garden. He scored 17 of his 25 points in the second half in a 60-54 upset of fourth-seeded Michigan State.