Michigan, Villanova bring wild NCAA Tournament to a close
03 April, 2018, 04:43 | Author: Eleanor Thompson
TBS, which has broadcast all the Final Four games in the tournament, will air the NCAA 2018 championship game on April 2. Over the course of their winning streak, MI has played lock down defense, giving up just 62 points per game to opponents.
On Monday night, the March Madness finally ended with the MI vs. Villanova live streaming online and televised NCAA Championship Game. Villanova is the opposite: The over is on a 15-5 streak over Villanova's last 20 games.
Villanova hasn't needed any buzzer-beating shots so far in this NCAA Tournament.
The Wildcats are ranked in the top five for points and field goal percentage, outscoring their past 10 opponents by almost 18 points a game, making it look like a tough task for the Wolverines. No team plays the spacing game better than Villanova.
Defensive pressure:Villanova rains threes, but there's no team better suited to contain the 3 point juggernaut than MI.
A victory would give Villanova its second championship in three years. But the fact that Loyola only scored 12 points in the last 12 minutes of the game was a huge part of the victory.
In 35 wins this season, the Wildcats have shot 42 percent on 3s.
This year? The numbers favor Villanova, which has outscored its tournament opponents by 0.23 points per possession.
And that might be a magic number of sorts for MI in the national title game as well: The Wolverines are 15-1 when scoring more than 75 this season, and a still-good -but nowhere near as good- 18-6 when they don't surpass that number.
MI is 38 of 120 (31.7) from 3-point range in the tournament, but opponents are 18 of 75 (24.0) from 3-point range.
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That's the scenario as MI and Villanova meet for the 2018 National Championship in San Antonio on Monday night.
In addition to the national feed on TBS, Turner Sports will also produce "homer" broadcasts including the national television feed paired with announcers catering to fans of one the two teams. He had 24 points and 15 rebounds in the win over Loyola. Having flown under the radar for much of the season, the Wolverines did not make an appearance in the AP Top 25 until the week of January 22. Florida State and Texas A&M were both held five attempts below their season averages in losing to MI in the NCAA Tournament.
MI wasn't the only big preseason poll whiff: Virginia ended the regular season ranked No. 1, and the Cavaliers were also unranked to start the season.
There's a reason so much of the talk surrounding the NCAA Tournament championship game is about 3-pointers. Deadly 3-point shooting and an abundance of offensive options make this team a death machine for any coach to have to handle. That included a record-setting effort against the Jayhawks in which the Wildcats hit 18 of 40 from 3-point range.
MI must find a way to run the Wildcats off the 3-point line and get them to miss at least some of the 3s they do get to have a chance.
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"When you have a group of guys that really trust each other on both ends of the floor, that aren't really caring about individual honors, individual success, just focused on the team successes, it's great to play like that", Brunson explained.
On the other bench, you have a bonafide, established coaching star in Wright, who already has one national title.
Only one previous champion made more than 400 threes in a season: The 2001 Duke squad led by Shane Battier and Jay Williams.
This meeting on Monday night will come down to strength against strength.
MI rode its defense into the title game.
Essentially, you have arguably the best three-point shooting team of all-time going up against one of the best three-point defensive teams in the nation.
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