2022 NCAA Basketball Championship Game: UNC vs. Kansas Named National Champion March Madness

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Saturday’s epic Final Four gave us a game of play in the National Championship for the entire time Kansas, seeded No. 1, will face North Carolina No. 8 in the final game of the 2022 NCAA Tournament on Monday night.

Kansas, the only seeded No. 1 to move into the top eight, took care of the business in a win against No. 2 Villanova in the first game on Saturday night. The Wildcats made several races, leading in Kansas, but some combination of Ochai Agbaji, David McCormack and Christian Brown gave the answer to each of Vilanov’s races, leaving no doubt in the last minutes of the game. Both coaches devastated the bench, and Kansas turned their attention to their first match of the national championship after meeting Kentucky in the same New Orleans in 2012.

The first ever meeting between North Carolina and Duke in the NCAA tournament brought so much excitement that one could almost blame the excitement for the poor shooting of both teams at the beginning of the game. But after about 10 minutes, the movement back and forth began, and the rubber match between rivals Tobacco Road delivered as much as one could hope for. 18 changes and 12 connections brought the full intensity of the college’s best basketball competition to the game’s biggest stage, but it was Caleb Lava’s game of clutch that pushed Tar Heels to the national championship game.

Kansas and North Carolina have met several times before in the Final Four, including the 1957 National Championship matches, the 1991 National Championship semifinals, the 1993 semifinals, and the 2008 semifinals. Here’s how each side confronts each other on Monday night:

(1) Kansas Jayhawks

Regional Champion of the Midwest

  • Record: 33-6
  • Performances in the final four: 16 (1940, 1952, 1953, 1957, 1971, 1974, 1986, 1988, 1991, 1993, 2002, 2003, 2008, 2012, 2018), 2
  • NCAA titles: 3 (1952, 1988, 2008)
  • NCAA Tournament Path: The first round – Zach. № 16 Texas Southern 83-56; The second round – defense. No. 9 Creighton 79-72; Sweet 16 – Zech. No. 4 Wire 66-61; Elite eight – Zach. No. 10 Miami 76-50; Zah. No. 2 Vilanova 81-65.
  • Coach: Bill Self is fourth in the Final Four as coach, and they all play with the Jayhawks. He won it all during his first visit in 2008, finished second in Kentucky in 2012 and dropped out of the national semifinals by future champion Vilanov in 2018. With 16 titles in the Big 12 regular season for 19 years with the program, Self has created a regular season sequence model that is unmatched in the entire sport.
  • The best player: Ochai Agbaji. The player of the year with the Big 12 is doing everything for this team. He can go outside as one of the best three-point shooters on the team or drive down the lane to play on the rim. In defense he can be an effective ball defender, bounce in defense or take off on a quick break to play outdoors if Kansas wants to increase the pace.
  • StrengthsA: This is an experienced team that plays with great confidence, exposing four seniors, a junior and two sophomores in its rotation of seven people. Two of these seniors have the potential to become the best player on the floor, but we haven’t seen them as stars at the same time. Agbaji was the top scorer of the Big 12, the best player of the year in the Big 12 and the American, but the tournament featured guard Remy Martin, who was recognized as the most outstanding player in the Midwest region, despite coming off the bench . as the sixth person and went missing most of February due to injuries. Both players are not just capable scorers, but also key figures in defending the Kansas perimeter, which will be the x-factor of success in the Final Four.
  • Weaknesses: After a stellar show in the Big 12 tournament, the Jayhawks were a bit striped in the Big Dance. The unequivocal victories against Creighton in the second round and Providence in Sweet 16 were tense, but it allowed Miami to break out with a 35-29 break, which really brought these consistency issues to the fore. Of course, this Kansas veteran team responded by beating the Hurricanes 47-15 in the last 20 minutes. But if you’re looking for weaknesses in this experienced and well-disassembled team, then this is something we haven’t seen as many as 40 minutes of her best basketball in the tournament.
  • Key number: 0. Every other team in the final four has at least one former five-star prospect on the list, and the Jayhawks have none. Me and experts around the world often started the analysis with some version of the phrase “this may not be the most talented Kansas team, but …” before praising the Jayhawks with 32 wins. Surprisingly, the program, which signed many five-star prospects and released dozens of NBA players, was one of the least talented teams in the Final Four, but the composition of this team – which, for the record, really 10 former four-star prospects – may be just that. they need to return to the Final Four and possibly win another national championship.
  • Outlook: Losing the NCAA 2020 tournament is not the main motivation for Kansas, but no one in the program that Self and the Jayhawks will lose. was the best team in the country at a time when the tournament was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Agbaji, David McCormack and Christian Brown were part of this team, and in this tournament almost every step was seen as a brace.

(8) North Carolina Tar Heels

Champion of the Eastern region

  • Record: 29-9
  • Performances in the final four: 20 (1946, 1957, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1972, 1977, 1981, 1982, 1991, 1993, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2000, 20, 20, 20, 20, 20, 20, 20
  • NCAA titles: 6 (1957, 1982, 1993, 2005, 2009, 2017)
  • NCAA Tournament Path: The first round – Zach. No. 9 Market 95-63; The second round – defense. No. 1 Baylor 93-86 (OT); Sweet 16 – Zech. № 4 UCLA 73-66; Elite eight – Zach. No. 15 St. Peter 69-49; Zah. No. 2 Duke 81-77
  • Coach: Hubert Davis is the first head coach since Bill Gutridge (in North Carolina in 1998) to lead his team to the Final Four in his first year. Roy Williams’ successor had a difficult start to the season, starting 12-6 without a clear victory outside the conference and 4-3 in the ACC, but a strong Tar Heels team before the season brought the team out of the bubble, into the field, and now all the way to the Final Four.
  • The best player: There has been a stylistic shift in North Carolina with the transition from Roy Williams to Hubert Davis, but he has retained at least one traditional great who can work with Armando Bacot. It would have been a bad decision not to allow one of the best pickers in the country to see as much time on the floor as possible, but it was interesting to watch as Becot also takes on modern roles in attack. He will start from the perimeter and swim to the lane, giving him the option to either drive to the basket or drive out one of North Carolina’s 3-point options if the defense collapses. The scorer, bouncer and facilitator are in Becot’s steering wheel, so he is the best player on the floor.
  • StrengthsA: North Carolina has four players capable of scoring more than 20 points on any night, and this versatility of scoring options makes them a dangerous team in terms of game planning. In this tournament alone, we saw guards Caleb Love and RJ Davis score 30 points each, Brady Manek scored 26 or more twice, and Bacot had a double-double in every post-season game (ACC Tournament and NCAA Tournament), the Tar Heels played in this year.
  • Weaknesses: The lack of competitive depth was fully revealed during the close 30-4 held by Baylor in the second half, which would ultimately be Tar Heels ’victory in the second round. After Manek was removed in the middle of the second half, and problems with Love overtook him even before the end of the main match, depth problems and Tar Hills matches against elite teams outside the starting five were fully revealed. Much has been done with the Iron Five, which holds most of the playing time and played every minute of the second half to beat Duke, but the other side of the Iron Five is the drop in experience and performance when one of those five is knocked out.
  • Key number: 39.1%. That’s a 3-point percentage of North Carolina’s win over Duke at Cameron’s indoor stadium. That’s just a few goals above the respectable average season at Tar Heels, which is 36.1%, but in that increase you can find what North Carolina need to beat Duke again on Saturday night in the Final Four. Although North Carolina improved in defense in March, the best course of action would be to not rely solely on defensive stops to win against the mighty blue devils. Timely protection stops, of course. But North Carolina must beat the top three to keep up with the scoreboard and give themselves a chance to win late.
  • Outlook: According to BartTorvik.com, where you can not only check performance figures for the season, but also sort data by date, North Carolina is the No. 1 team in the country for adjusted performance offensive from March 1st. The seven -play of the game is entirely subject to criticism due to the small sample size, but it also supports what our eyes have told us. North Carolina may not be the country’s absolute No. 1 team now, but it is playing just as well as the country’s best teams since the calendar moved from February to March. Tar Heels are number 8 in the tournament, but the quality of the game represents a team that does not register as a team from numbers 29-32 in field 68. However, the challenge of winning the next game is the biggest at hand.

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