Ahh, championship week in college basketball, where heroes are made and legends are born. Oh, it’s no hyperbole, a single shot or instance can forever engrain a player into their school’s lore for the rest of eternity.
Yesterday, it happened. THE most improbable shot you’ll ever see, courtesy of UConn’s Jalen Adams. Now, I’ll give a backdrop on the day’s festivities by saying it was the craziest 24 hours college basketball has seen in recent years.
It included a near-meltdown by Oregon (v. Arizona), a near-half-court game-winner by Buddy Hield over West Virginia, UNC’s slaughtering of Notre Dame in the ACC tourney and Michigan’s Kameron Chatman cashing a winning triple to defeat top-seeded Indiana in the B1G tourney.
Crazy stuff, right?
Well, ALL of it paled in comparison to the 4OT, AAC epic that featured Cincinnati & UConn. The stage was set: both teams desperately needed a victory to strengthen their NCAA tourney hopes.
And after battling all game long, with big performances coming from Cincy’s Troy Coupain (37 points) and UConn’s Daniel Hamilton (32 points), the Bearcats found themselves with the rock at the end of triple OT.
All knotted up at 85, Cincy’s Kevin Johnson lifted a three-pointer that neatly fell through the hoop with 0.8 seconds to go. BALL GAME, right? Not exactly.
With the Bearcats celebrating and ignoring a potential game-tying three from well beyond half-court, UConn’s Jalen Adams (22 points, 8 rebounds) called for the ball and threw in a heave that will be replayed every March from now til the end of time:
UConn outlasted Cincy during the next period and went on to advance. Yep, that was merely a semifinal matchup.
The madness is just getting started.