Posted March 31, 2012 on
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The highlight packages will be full of Anthony Davis' one-hand jam off an alley-oop pass and a couple of his hook shots - including one with his non-shooting hand - but what got Kentucky to its 11th national championship game was defense.
A lot of defense.
The Wildcats didn't break the 80-point mark as they did in their first four NCAA tournament games - the first team to do that since Kentucky won its last title in 1998 - but they stopped Louisville whenever they had to in their 69-61 victory Saturday night.
Kentucky (37-2) held the Cardinals to 34.8 percent shooting (24 for 69), well below their season mark of 42.5, but even more importantly, it was below the 37.5 percent the Wildcats allowed all season - a mark that led the nation.
''It's great stuff,'' said Kentucky coach John Calipari. ''I'm proud of this team. They're coming together. They've taken on shots and runs like Louisville did today, and they've held their own, so I'm proud of them.''
And it was Davis, the 6-foot-10 freshman who was the national Player of the Year, leading the way with five of Kentucky's seven blocked shots while altering several others as he did all season in being named the Southeastern Conference Defensive Player of the Year.
The defense was at its best late after Louisville (30-10) had whittled a 13-point deficit to 53-51 with 7:34 to play. The Cardinals missed their next nine shots as Kentucky opened the lead to 60-51 with 4:29 to go.
Despite being outrebounded 40-33, including 19-6 on the offensive end, Kentucky played the defense that had it at No. 1 for 10 weeks this season and earned the Wildcats the overall No. 1 seed in the tournament.
BEST OF MAXIM
Oh you crazed Kentucky fans, are there no limits to your obsessive fandom? If you’re not fighting with Louisville fans at a dialysis clinic, you’re decorating your pets in a Wildcats motif by drawing Anthony Davis’ now famous unibrow onto your cat’s forehead, in what can only be described as an act of extremely mild animal cruelty. Yes, cruelty. Even members of the...
Kentucky wound up right where it expected to be all along.
Even if it took a little work to get there.
Anthony Davis and top-seeded Kentucky will play for the national title Monday night after finally putting away pesky Louisville 69-61 in the Final Four on Saturday night. It will be Kentucky's first appearance in the title game since winning a seventh NCAA crown back in 1998...
The spread on Kentucky has climbed to 7 points at some sportsbooks and the betting public continues to back the Wildcats ahead of their battle with Kansas Monday night.
The college basketball national final won't be much of a battle if oddsmakers are right. And it could be a great day for bettors if Kentucky covers the spread.
"The line opened at -6 but it's up to -7...
For Kentucky's Anthony Davis it has been a remarkable season that already includes SEC Offensive & Defensive player of the year awards. However, as Davis and the rest of the Wildcats prepare for the Louisville Cardinals Saturday in the Final Four, news broke that Davis had been voted The Associated Press men's college basketball Player of the Year. Davis received 43...
Below I rank the best players from both Kansas and Kentucky. I actually ranked the top 11 players because Darius Miller is just like another starter. Check out the list below.
1.Anthony Davis (Kentucky) – Davis is not only the best freshman in the country he is also the best overall player and defensive player as well. Just look what he is doing in the NCAA tournament...
College basketball’s top two elite of Davis and Robinson go for all the jambalaya tonight in New Orleans.
Uh-huh…exactly as I thought: Kentucky vs. Kansas for the national championship on Monday night. It took a valiant effort by Kansas (and likely a firm tongue lashing from head coach Bill Self) to get the Jayhawks to finally show up in their second half semi-final against...
1.Anthony Davis (Kentucky) – Davis will be the Player, Freshman, and Defensive Player of the Year. He is clearly the best player in the nation. Just look what he is doing in the NCAA tournament. Davis is averaging 14.5 points, 11 rebounds, 4.5 blocks, and 2.7 assists. His skill for his size separates him from only players.
2.Jared Sullinger (Ohio State) – Sullinger...
Jayhawks or Wildcats, take your pick. Either can make a case for this being ''their'' year.
For Kansas, a season that started with low expectations keeps getting better, filled with high-wire comebacks and a feeling this is simply meant to be.
For Kentucky, a cadre of NBA-caliber players have had the word ''champion'' practically imprinted on their...
Kentucky vs. Kansas
Kentucky is playing lights out right now they are clearly the best team in the country. I don’t know if some of the bad NBA teams could beat them right now. The star for the Wildcats is once again Anthony Davis. Just like Kentucky is clearly the best team in the country Davis is clearly the best player in the nation. All the freshman did against...
"Kentucky is on another level. Everyone else is playing for second place."
A statement I've heard too often this year.
It's been a forgone conclusion all season. Kentucky, a team filled with freshmen and sophomores, and considered the most talented team in college basketball, will play for and win a National Championship in April.
Led by National Player of the...
[caption id="attachment_2042" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Expect a repeat of this celebratory moment for the Kentucky Wildcats when they play the Kansas Jayhaws in the NCAA championship Monday night. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)"][/caption]
(Sorry, couldn't resist).
And at long last, the NCAA Championship arrives. From the South...