Villanova Students Rage, Set Fires ... After NCAA Title

Villanova NCAA title fixed

Donte DiVincenzo and his Wildcats completed one of the most impressive runs in tournament history with a comfortable victory over the Wolverines, who had won 14 straight games.

Villanova has its second national championship in three years after a 79-62 victory over MI.

"I knew we were good, but you don't think, 'We can win this.' After the West Virginia game, I knew we had a shot", Wright said.

After Jay Wright led the Villanova Wildcats to a second NCAA title in three seasons following Monday's 79-62 win over the Michigan Wolverines, it was only a matter of time before the head coach saw his name mentioned for possible jobs in the National Basketball Association expected to be available next season.

DiVincenzo's 31 points were a record for a bench player in a championship game and earned him the award of Most Outstanding player for the 2018 Final Four. He capped the second shooting skein with a 3-pointer from a step behind the arc. I was just trying to make the right play. "I still like looking up to them. I do. And Omari [Spellman] was setting great screens and getting me open".

The 3 that sealed it came from a big step behind the arc and gave Villanova a 62-44 lead with a bit less than 8 minutes left.

Villanova had the biggest lead in the game with an advantage of 22 at one point.

As for Bridges himself, he just wrapped up an impressive junior campaign, averaging 17.7 points a game and playing himself into the lottery discussion for the 2018 NBA Draft.

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Starting the second half on the bench, DiVincenzo was subbed in after just 52 seconds. Around eight minutes left in the second half, the game was essentially over, the damage too great for MI to regain their ground against Villanova.

"When he came off and hit those 3s, we could not answer", MI coach John Beilein said. "Rather than come to college saying I want to get out as soon as I can".

But with DiVincenzo, it was too much for MI (33-8), ending an impressive run for a team aiming to win its first national title since 1989. "Sometimes those individual performances just beat you, and you just say, 'OK, we played you the best we could, and tonight, you were better than us'".

Washington, a MI basketball assistant coach, returned home Tuesday after the Wolverines' 79-62 national championship loss to Villanova. So, it wasn't really a surprise when DiVincenzo said he was most proud of the two blocks in the title game than the game-high 31 points on 10-for-15 shooting.

Villanova's Jalen Brunson (1) watches as Michigan's Moritz Wagner (13) leaves the game during the second half in the championship game of the Final Four on Monday in San Antonio. "As a coach, there's just nothing better", he said after Villanova's win. At the same time, DiVincenzo is now 21 and I imagine he has matured over the past seven years. "We have full confidence in him to take that shot; and when he got hot, we kept giving him the ball".

The Wildcats were brilliant in winning their third championship, becoming the first team since North Carolina in 2009 to win all six games by double figures in the NCAA Tournament.

— In the post-John Wooden/UCLA era, only three other teams have won two titles in three seasons: Duke in 1991 and 1992, Florida in 2006 and 2007 and Kentucky in 1996 and 1998.

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