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Villaova wins title at the buzzer in a classic

Kris Jenkins

Kris Jenkins shotThis is not hyperbole. That was one of the greatest championship games in the history of sports.

Villanova and North Carolina proved all tournament long they were superior than every team they faced, and it made for an epic title game that was close the entire way, filled with great plays by great players and ended with two of the most ridiculous 3-point shots of the season.

Marcus Paige – criticized all season long for his inconsistency shooting from beyond the arc – nailed an awkward 3-pointer with just a few seconds remaining to tie the game. He re-adjusted his shot around three different Wildcat defenders jumping in his way, and kept the Tar Heels title hopes alive at the very end.

But Villanova was not rattled by the shot. Ryan Arcidiacono, the life-long Villanova fan, dribbled the ball up the court, faked that he was going to drive to the basket and kicked the ball over to a wide-open Kris Jenkins and he won the National Championship on a buzzer beater.

Villanova, a team that doesn’t appear to have a single first round draft pick – which would make them the first national champions without any first-round pick in it’s starting lineup since the 1987 Indiana Hoosiers – beat the blue-blooded North Carolina Tar Heels, going for their sixth national championship and third under Roy Williams.

The victory heals all those wounds of wasted opportunities the past few years when incredibly talented Wildcat teams failed to make it out of the opening weekend of the NCAA Tournament. But more than it just healing their wounds, it won a title for the re-invented and re-focused Big East.

The northeast based conference has always been a proud basketball conference, but as FBS football and the money that comes with it became more and more powerful the Big East changed it’s focus. The basketball was still great, but the conference continually made moves for football. And when the league was split in half with eight football schools and eight non-football schools, things were bound to end up the way they did.

The power struggle became too much and the ACC kept poaching the football schools away with their ability to pitch a conference championship game and more football money. That left the remaining football schools searching for more schools to bring in, but when those teams were proposed to be San Diego State, Boise State and SMU, the basketball schools said enough was enough.

They took over. They essentially kicked the remaining football schools out, kept the Big East name and kept their basketball tournament in Madison Square Garden. The Big East said good riddance with basketball.

Without football money it was believed the conference would take a turn downward, but instead those schools all focused on basketball created a tremendous power. Five Big East teams went to the NCAA Tournament and Villanova proved to be the best team in the country as they became the first school without an FBS football team to win a national championship since…themselves in 1985.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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