The UConn Huskies defeated the Butler Bulldogs 53-41(yes that is the final score) to secure Jim Calhoun’s third national championship since 1999 making him the oldest coach to ever win the title. It wasn’t the prettiest title game, in fact it was arguably the ugliest, but that certainly won’t matter to a guy like Kemba Walker, who will likely now exit college as a champion.
For Butler, this is going to be a bitter pill to swallow. They captured everyone’s imagination last year when they went on their magical run which ended with them giving Duke everything it could handle in the title game. This year, they proved that run was no fluke by getting back to the title game. However, their performance in the game was nothing less than an embarrassment.
Butler shot 18% from the field, which was the lowest percentage in championship history. Kenny Smith said of Butler’s performance "By far the worst performance in a championship game I’ve ever seen. Unfortunately we all had to watch it."
UConn wasn’t a whole lot better to be fair. They managed just 19 first half points and won with the least amount of points since the forties… They shot just 30% from the field including 1-14 from three point range. The difference in the game really was Jeremy Lamb’s performance in the second half. He scored all twelve of his points in the final frame, which ended up being the margin of victory.
The awfulness, and it really was awful to watch, of the final doesn’t change what an incredible run the Connecticut Huskies went on to finish their season. They started by winning five games in five nights to win the Big East tournament, the first team to do so, then followed that up with a NCAA Tournament win. It will certainly go down as one of the great late season surges of all time. They won 11 games in 27 days and every single one was an elimination game. That's incredible.