I have no clue what that means, but it is probably the most uttered phrase of the day as Kansas Jayhawk fans celebrate the National Championship that should not have been.
For the first time ever I had correctly selected all four semifinalists, but I was 0-2 in my picks for the finals. That mattered little to me, and I was entertained by this year’s final. But as a former (high school) basketball player I felt sick watching the Memphis Tigers launch one brick after another from the foul line in the game’s final minutes. Memphis simply imploded done the stretch, while Kansas kept pecking away until they were the ones cutting down the nets.
In a post-game interview Memphis guard Derrick Rose said:
It wasn’t really the free throws. If we’d done things before the free throws, we would’ve been in good shape.
Actually, Derrick, it was the free throws. I’m sure there were other aspects of the game which the team could have done better, but it was the failure to hit clutch free throws that cost Memphis this game. Contrast their inability to knock down charity shots with Mario Chalmers’ game-tying, championship saving three at game’s end.
I tend to agree more with Chris Douglas-Roberts, the other Memphis guard, who missed three consecutive free throws down the stretch. He said:
It hurts, you know. It really hurts. They made some great plays down the stretch, and Mario hit a big shot at the end of regulation…We missed those shots. No excuses. They won the game fairly. I thought the officiating was really good. We just came up short.
This was another fun tournament, and another exciting finish. Too bad the NBA and NHL playoffs can’t follow the NCAA’s post-season style.