National Championship Game
North Carolina vs Kansas
Monday, April 4, 2022:
Wow, what a game between North Carolina and Duke on Saturday night! The two rivals, merely miles apart, have been involved in a number of classic matchups, however, those were relegated to regular season and ACC Tournament games. This was the first time the giants had met in the NCAA tournament, and the game did not disappoint! The 2021-2022 Tar Heels will go down as the squad that spoiled legendary Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski’s last home game at venerable Cameron Indoor Stadium, as well as put him into retirement permanently.
Success for the Tar Heels in the title game will depend on the availability and effectiveness of big man Armando Bacot, who is nursing an ankle injury. Bacot dominated Duke inside to the tune of 11 points and a whopping 21 rebounds. He combines with Brady Manek to gives teams fits up front. The outside game comes primarily in the form of Caleb Love, who is turning himself into a big game legend by hitting huge shots. Don’t sleep on guard RJ Davis, either.
Meanwhile, the beat goes on for the Kansas Jayhawks, who looked unstoppable on Saturday against Villanova. Bill Self’s club runs and spaces the floor as well as anyone in the country and could provide problems for UNC’s transition defense. The Jayhawks feature the tough backcourt of Ochai Agbaji, Christian Braun, and Remy Martin, while Jalen Wilson, David McCormack, and Mitch Lightfoot make up a formidable frontcourt.
On paper, I’d say that Kansas is the better team. However, I have said that about Baylor, UCLA, and Duke, as well; teams that share the distinction of having been sent packing by the Tar Heels. I’m liking another nail biter in this one, only this time I’m picking Cinderella.
North Carolina over Kansas