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John Calipari explains why Kentucky didn’t foul at end of game

John CalipariThe last minute of competitive basketball games generally takes a long time to play out because the losing team tends to foul to try keeping the game close. That did not happen in the NCAA Tournament title game on Monday night between UConn and Kentucky, and John Calipari explained why after the game.

The Kentucky coach told CBS’ Tracy Wolfson that Kentucky didn’t foul because UConn was too great at their free throws.

“I needed to do a couple more things to help [my team], to get them over the hump, and we just didn’t have enough,” Calipari said.

He then went on to explain why they didn’t foul.

“We couldn’t foul late. I know everyone’s [asking] ‘why didn’t you foul?’ Because they’re not missing! Those two guards never miss! Our best chance was two-possession game, stop them, make a basket, timeout, try to steal — that was our best chance.”

Calipari also added that he thought at halftime that they would win the game. They came close, but fell short.

Calipari’s reasoning actually makes sense. UConn went 10-of-10 at the free throw line in the title game and set a tournament record for highest free throw percentage. Hoping for them to miss at the line was a longshot. The real problem was the same one Calipari has experienced before; his team couldn’t make free throws.

Shabazz Napier has message for NCAA after winning title

Shabazz Napier UConn

Shabazz Napier had a message for the NCAA after leading UConn to the National Championship with a 60-54 win over Kentucky on Monday.

The senior guard, who won the title as a freshman and book-ended his career with another title as a senior, let loose in his postgame interview with CBS’ Jim Nantz.

“Honestly, I want to get everyone’s attention right quick,” Napier began, signifying he had something important to say. “Ladies and gentlemen, you’re looking at the Hungry Huskies. This is what happens when you ban us. Two years. We worked so hard for it. Two years and hungry. Hungry Huskies.”

Napier was named the Final Four Most Outstanding Player, so he definitely had some leeway to say what he wanted.

UConn was banned from the postseason last year for not meeting the NCAA’s academic requirements. It’s not like they were ratted out for breaking recruiting rules or something — they couldn’t make grades. But, hey, if that’s what motivated the team, then let’s not stand in Shabazz’s way.

UConn wins NCAA title, sets tournament record for free throws

Kevin Ollie UConn

UConn was stellar from the free throw line in their National Championship Game win over Kentucky on Monday night, which followed a record-setting pattern established by the Huskies during their March Madness run.

UConn beat Kentucky 60-54 and went 10-of-10 on free throws in the game. Kentucky, on the other hand, was 13-of-24. The difference between the two teams’ success at the line could be the exact reason why UConn won while Kentucky lost.

But this is exactly what UConn has done all tournament.

The Huskies went 21-for-22 at the line in the regional final against Michigan State to earn a berth to the Final Four. They were 10-of-13 at the line in the Final Four against Florida to earn a trip to the championship game.

According to CBS Sports’ Tony Moss, UConn went 101-115 (87.8%) from the line during the tournament, which broke the record of 87.0% (47-54) by St. John’s in 1969.

James Young dunks on half of UConn’s defense (Video)

Just when UConn was starting to pull away from Kentucky in the second half of the NCAA Tournament’s National Championship Game, James Young did his best to regenerate some momentum.

The freshman guard threw down just a ridiculous dunk over about half of UConn’s defense to give the Wildcats a much-needed bucket. He even got Amida Brimah to be called for a fourth foul on the play!

Look at what he had to dunk over:

James Young dunk Kentucky

And he still made it happen.

Image via @Jose3030

Rex Chapman: John Calipari is going to coach Lakers

John Calipari KentuckyFormer Kentucky star and NBA player Rex Chapman created some major waves on the college and pro basketball scene when he tweeted prior to Monday’s National Championship Game that current Wildcats coach John Calipari would be taking the Los Angeles Lakers coaching job.

The feeling has long been that Mike D’Antoni, fairly or unfairly, would not be back as Lakers head coach next season following this year’s disaster. The rumor received more credibility when another report said Kobe Bryant did not want to play for D’Antoni.

As you could imagine, the Lakers have denied the rumor.

“I spoke to [General Manager] Mitch Kupchak and he said the rumor is untrue,” Lakers spokesman John Black said via the Los Angeles Times. “Mike D’Antoni is our coach. There have been no conversations about any specific names for any replacement.”

D’Antoni is currently employed by the team, so what would you expect them to say? Yeah, we’re firing Mike and hiring John? Of course they were going to deny it.

The question is would Calipari actually leave Kentucky for the Lakers? Cal is only 55 and still has plenty of years left in him. His run with the Nets did not go the way he wanted — he was fired during his third season — so maybe he would want to prove he can coach at the highest level. Plus, let’s be real here, it’s not like he has huge ties to Kentucky; this is only his fifth season there and he’s already won one title and been to two championship games and three Final Fours. Maybe he felt more inclined to leave after all the fans started crushing him amid the shaky season at Kentucky this year.

Willie Cauley-Stein wears crazy looking shirt

Willie Cauley-Stein shirt

Willie Cauley-Stein did not play in the national championship game between UConn and Kentucky on Monday night because of an injury, but he still made his presence felt.

Oh yeah, Cauley-Stein wore the undershirt you see above beneath his jersey. No idea what he was thinking. No idea if he lost a bet. No idea how much he was paid. We do know that that shirt was plain LOUD.

Oh, and this Photoshop from our friend HP Basketball was just money:

Derek the UConn RA is officially America’s least favorite RA

Derek-the-RA-letter
(click to enlarge)

A lot of stuff is going to get broken when the final whistle sounds in the NCAA men’s national championship game on Monday night. Both UConn and Kentucky are massive universities that love their basketball, and we know what rowdy college kids do when their team wins or loses a huge game. One resident assistant from UConn is not going to have any of that nonsense in his house.

In anticipation of the big game, a UConn RA named Derek sent the letter you see above to the students who live on his floor telling them he is not going to tolerate any type of excessive celebrating. He also basically called everyone bandwagon fans and said the only reason they care about the game is because the uniforms say UConn or they want an excuse to party.

“If it’s the first one, you’re cheering for laundry,” Derek wrote. “If it’s the second one, be as far away from me as possible tonight.”

In other words, no one can possibly actually care about their school’s basketball team because they like basketball and want to see their team win. Derek just doesn’t see that as a realistic scenario.

As you might expect, the Twitter world has already labeled Derek the worst RA in America. When I went to UConn the North Campus dorms were dry, and none of our RA’s were that douchey with their emails. There are countless other ways he could have gone about it. Derek later sent another email to students clarifying the original letter, which Barstool Sports passed along.

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