Wow, what a tournament. March was mad. Now, Kansas wins the national championship as North Carolina goes home runners-up. It was a hard-fought battle the whole way. Truly. Kansas completed a historic comeback to secure another national championship. Kansas wins 72-69.
This game was drama, it was college basketball at its best, and it was fun to watch. After a quick 7-0 start, it looked like the Kansas Jayhawks were going to show why they were the No. 1 seed. Then, all of a sudden, North Carolina was fighting back. By the time the first half ended, it looked like a Tar Heels victory was just 20 minutes away. Hubert Davis and his squad took a 40-25 lead. Hubert Davis was fired up. Then, things changed.
Coming out of halftime, there was another momentum shift. At one point, the Jayhawks were on a 34-10 run. What had been a game-high lead of 16 for Carolina ended up being a 6 point lead for Kansas. By the under eight-minute timeout, the ball game was all tied up, 57-57. There were some complaints from fans online about officiating. But, hey, it’s college basketball, what do you expect?
There were big shots, hold-your-breath-moments, and a lot of emotion. Just what you want from an NCAA final. And, there was a surprise hero. Puff Johnson, the younger brother of former Tar Heel and current Phoenix Sun Cam Johnson. He played more minutes tonight than in the entire tournament. He gave the Heels 11 points and 6 rebounds off the bench.
Kansas outlasted the Heels, and thanks to David McCormack, wins the national championship.
Back and Forth Final as Kansas/North Carolina Wins the National Championship
This game was just special. After the high of the UNC/Duke game, it was tough to see a championship being nearly as good. I was on the edge of my seat this whole game. Armando Bacot is a monster on the boards. Brady Manek is a tough dude. Christian Braun showed up and showed out with a big double-double for the Jayhawks.
This might have not been pretty basketball. However, it was fun basketball. Two storied programs battling it out for the championship. Doesn’t get better than that. Seeing Bacot roll his ankle multiple times over the night, was heartbreaking. You just feel for the kid and he gave it his all.
Bill Self has his second NCAA Tournament championship at Kansas.
He has worked hard and long since 2008 to rise to the pinnacle of the sport again. With a talented group featuring Braun, Ochai Agbaji, David McCormack, and good minutes from Martin, the Jayhawks are champions yet again. 1952, 1988, 2008, and now, 2022.