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SPORTS
April 9, 2013 | By John Altavilla
NEW ORLEANS - After all the years and countless milestones, it's hardly possible for Connecticut to bounce a pass anymore without making history. Geno Auriemma, the master craftsman, and his series of master classes, have become as synonymous to women's basketball as Howard Johnson was to the ice-cream cone. Things just seemed vastly different in the world once they came along. On Tuesday, after being re-routed at times by injuries and, well, you know, Notre Dame, the Huskies arrived at the place they've come to know so well.
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SPORTS
April 8, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
ATLANTA — Michigan will have three or four thank-you notes to hand out should it win Monday night's national championship game against Louisville at the Georgia Dome. It can start with Penn State, which beat the Wolverines by 14 points in State College on Feb. 27. Penn State, before that night, was 0-14 in Big Ten play. That had to be a defibrillator-like shock to the system. Michigan can thank the NCAA for tournament expansion and ditching the rule that once required that a team win its conference title or postseason tournament.
SPORTS
April 7, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
ATLANTA -- Florida Gulf Coast was a carnival cruise while it lasted and Wichita State was a hoot, but there will be nothing "mid" about the majors playing for Monday's national title. The final call is strictly blue grass vs. blue blood. Louisville, the top overall No.1 team in the tournament, will play Michigan from the Big Ten, the nation's top overall conference this season. Everyone else — thanks for participating. In Saturday's national semifinal games in front of a football-sized Georgia Dome crowd, Louisville held off interloper Wichita State, 72-68, then Michigan survived the vortex that had been Syracuse's zone defense, 61-56.
SPORTS
April 6, 2013 | By Shannon Ryan
ATLANTA -- This one, Michigan fans, is on the books. Two decades after the famed Fab Five led the Wolverines to two NCAA tournament championship games that were later vacated, another group of fabulous young players has Michigan back in the title game after a 61-56 victory over fellow No. 4 seed Syracuse on Saturday night. Michigan Coach John Beilein made the most of his first Final Four game in a career that has spanned every level of college basketball, climbing from junior colleges to Division III to Division II to Division I to the chance to become the best team in the nation.
SPORTS
April 6, 2013 | By Shannon Ryan
ATLANTA -- When Kevin Ware's leg snapped unnaturally and horrifically in front of Louisville's bench less than a week ago, players collapsed on the court, turned away in horror and some cried. Except Luke Hancock. The junior forward knelt by Ware's side, praying over him, saying later that he didn't want Ware to feel alone. As calm as he was in the face of horror in the Elite Eight, he was just as poised Saturday night in the Georgia Dome as Louisville faced a Final Four collapse.
SPORTS
April 5, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
WICHITA STATE Starters P; Player; Ht; Wt; Statistics G; Ron Baker; 6-3; 218; 8.6 ppg F; Cleanthony Early; 6-8; 215; 13.7 ppg F; Carl Hall; 6-8; 238; 6.9 rpg G; Tekele Cotton; 6-4; 202; 6.4 ppg G; Malcolm Armstead; 6-0; 205; 10.9 ppg Reserves C; Ehimen Orukpe; 7-0; 250; 2.7 ppg F; Fred VanVleet; 5-11; 190; 4.3 ppg LOUISVILLE Starters P; Player; Ht.; Wt.; Statistics ...
SPORTS
April 5, 2013 | By Shannon Ryan
Ask Louisville Coach Rick Pitino or Syracuse's Jim Boeheim about Madison Square Garden or Big East Conference founder Dave Gavitt. Even the tight-lipped Boeheim becomes sentimental and is apt to weave a story about a Big East classic. "I would have been happy if someone said, 'Coach, you're going to coach Syracuse and be in this league 10 years,'" Boeheim said. "'We'll give you 10 pretty good years, but that's it.' I'd have said, 'OK, I'll take it,' right then. It just has been unbelievable.
SPORTS
April 5, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
SYRACUSE Starters P; Ht.; Wt.; Statistics F; C.J. Fair; 6-6; 215; 14.3 ppg F; James Southerland; 6-8; 215; 13.5 ppg C; Rakeem Christmas; 6-9; 242; 4.6 rpg G; Brandon Triche; 6-4; 210; 13.7 ppg G; Michael Carter-Williams; 6-6; 185; 12.1 ppg Reserves DeJuan Coleman; 6-9; 288; 8.9 ppg Baye Moussa Keita; 6-10; 215; 3.7 ppg MICHIGAN Starters P; Ht.; Wt.; Statistics F;...
SPORTS
April 5, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
ATLANTA -- This Final Four will be "lights out" on the scoreboard only if there's a second-half power outage at the Georgia Dome. (Hey, it already happened at one football stadium this year.) Saturday's two games in a vacuous, 75,000-seat venue have the potential to rekindle memories of the 1940 NCAA tournament. The semifinal scores that year were 39-30 and 43-42. Wichita State is playing Louisville in Saturday's first semifinal; Syracuse and Michigan in the nightcap. What jumps out about these matchups is not the jump shooters.
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