Missed out on anything? HOW?! That’s all I’ve written these last few days! Oh well…..West, East, Southwest, Southeast, and Final Four. We’re down to Kansas out of the Southwest and Ohio State out of the East for the right to be crowned national champions.
#1 Ohio State vs. #1 Kansas
Given the slew of lopsided matches this game was a breath of fresh air. Neither side could manage a lead larger than 6. It looked like Bill Self’s Jayhawks would go into the locker room up by 3 but Deshaun Thomas and Jared Sullinger closed it out with consecutive made jumpers to give the Buckeyes the slimmest of margins. Ohio State 32 Kansas 31
Kansas came out firing and led 42-35 with a little under 3 mins gone in the 2nd half. They protected their lead for the most part but let Ohio State back in it through sloppy basketball and horrendous free throw shooting. OSU went on a 6-0 run and with 7:41 remaining recaptured the lead at 56-53. The game took a dramatic turn with 6:38 to go when star player Jared Sullinger picked up his 5th foul and had to leave for the remainder of the game. Still, you would think a team that finished the game with 22 turnovers and 7-22 free throw shooting would be blown out by now, right? Especially considering that this is against Ohio State of all teams. With Sullinger out, the finale will shock you…….
“Tyshawn Taylor comes up with the steal! He fires one up from downtown and hits! Kansas up by 5! Just 2:06 left!”
“Second chance opportunity for the Buckeyes after the Jon Diebler miss. Aron Craft passes inside to David Buford to cut the lead to 3!”
“DIEBLER STEALS IT FROM TAYLOR! CHANCE TO TIE IT! Diebler to Craft for three!!! OHHHH!!! TIED AT 66-66!”
“Taylor on the feed from Brady Morningstar. He fades and scores! Kansas leads again with :53 left!”
“Back come the Buckeyes! Diebler kicks it to Thomas and SCORES! SCORES! TIED AGAIN!”
“Markieff Morris looking to give Kansas the lead back! OFF THE MARK! THE REBOUND GOES TO TYLOR FOR KANSAS WITH :21 LEFT!”
“KANSAS LOOKING TO WIN IT HERE!!! IT’S STILL TAYLOR! HE PUTS IT UP! AND HE DRILLS IT!!! TAYLOR ON THE PULL-UP WITH ONE SECOND TO GO!!!! DIEBLER FIRES IT FOR THE WIN!!!! OH IT’S SHORT AND THE KANSAS JAYHAWKS ARE CHAMPIONS AGAIN! SECOND TIME IN FOUR YEARS THE JAYHAWKS ARE ON TOP OF COLLEGE BASKETBALL! TAYLOR IS THE HERO!” – Kansas 70 Ohio State 68
A sterling and remarkable 28-47 (59%) effort from the floor was the key to Kansas’ victory. Much like the game against Pittsburgh in the semifinal they just could not miss. They outrebounded OSU 38-25 and Taylor got the most important rebound of them all. So despite doubling Ohio State in turnovers and not even breaking 40% from the foul line, Kansas wins at the gun and win March Madness Simulated 2011. Markieff Morris wins tournament’s MOP.
Thanks again to Justin for helping me simulate all of this in just 3 days and I look forward to the real bonanza starting tomorrow. Enjoy the rest of March Madness, everybody.