NCAA Championship 2012: KU KO'd By UK In Battle of Basketball's Big Boys

Kentucky and Kansas meet on Monday night in New Orleans with a chance to take home college basketball's biggest prize.

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23 Total Updates since April 2, 2012
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Kentucky Vs. Kansas Final Score: Wildcats Down Jayhawks For National Title

All throughout this year's NCAA Tournament, the Kansas Jayhawks have made a poor habit of falling behind at halftime or even later and having to climb their way back. While such victories certainly build courage, character and a toughened sense of chemistry, it can also prove to be too much when facing a team finally able to put them away. That's exactly what happened at the Superdome in New Orleans last night when they lost in the national title game to the Kentucky Wildcats in a 67-59 loss.

The Wildcats were up on the Jayhawks 41-27 at halftime and even though KU pulled its typical second half dominance, it just wasn't enough to overcome the deficit. The KU bench scored zero points, and UK simply proved to hold too much offensive muscle. That said, Kansas' defense held Anthony Davis to just 1 of 10 shooting for 6 overall points. If you would have said that before the game, it would seem Kansas would be the winner.

However, Doron Lamb scored 22 for Kentucky and led the way on 7 of 12 shooting. Thomas Robinson paced KU with 18 points.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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Kentucky Vs. Kansas Predictions: Jayhawks Favored In National Championship By What If Sports Simulation

The Kentucky Wildcats have been the favored team throughout the entire 2011-12 college basketball season. They sat at No. 1 for much of the year. They came into the NCAA Tournament as the top overall seed, even among fellow No. 1 seeds. Heading into tonight, they are definitely the favored candidate to win the national championship over the Kansas Jayhawks. But try telling that to the team at What If Sports whose simulation places Kansas on top of Kentucky after literally thousands of sims.

Ryan Fowler writes, “Keeping with tradition, we re-simulated the title game 2,001 times. To our surprise, the Jayhawks won the first batch of games over 54 percent of the time. Due to the close margin of victory and simulation trend favoring Kentucky each round prior, we elected to run the title game 2,001 more times. This was not to give an edge to the Wildcats, but to verify that the sim-engine did, indeed, favor Kansas in a head-to-head matchup. It did.”

WhatIfSports.com is all about sports simulations, so they’ve been at this for a long time. Whether or not this means anything is up to individual discretion, but it shows that the game tonight might not be as decided as some would like to predict. Kansas has shown an ability to upend predictions thus far in the tournament. Tonight might turn out to be the greatest example of all.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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Kentucky Vs. Kansas: Game Tip-Off Time, TV Schedule, Announcers

In a matter of hours, someone will be crowned national champions. For both the Kentucky Wildcats and Kansas Jayhawks, it's about the chance to add yet another banner to two of the most celebrated college basketball programs of all-time. For the coaches involved, it's about finally earning that first trophy for John Calipari or hoisting another for Bill Self. Of course, for the stars involved like Thomas Robinson and Anthony Davis, it's about bragging rights and draft status at the next level. Being a hero here can make you millions over there. Just ask Carmelo Anthony.

Here's all the info you need to check out tonight's epic match-up.

NCAA Championship Game Info: Kentucky Vs. Kansas

Game time/date: 9:23 p.m. ET, Monday, April 2, 2012

Location: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, La.

TV: CBS

Announcers: Jim Nantz, Clark Kellogg, and Steve Kerr

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.


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Kansas Vs. Kentucky: Anthony Davis, Jeff Withey Showcase Two Greatest Shot Blockers In College

Tonight’s national championship game to crown the greatest in college basketball for the 2011-12 season is bound to feature some incredible shots and highlight-reel dunks. But one other thing you’re bound to see tonight is the awesome shot blocking skills of two of the best in the country. Anthony Davis of Kentucky and Jeff Withey of KU are actually called the best by Kansas head coach Bill Self.

“[Davis is] probably the best shot-blocker in the country. If he is, and I think we’ve got the second-best right here, two great shot-blockers [will be] going at each other,” Self said.

Calipari describes Davis as a great shot blocker because of his technique and the permission he gives the shooter to go ahead and try.

“He doesn’t block it in your hands; he lets you release it. That’s what great shot-blockers do,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said. “They never try to get it in your hand. … Even though he will block his own man’s shot, it’s the other guys he’s getting most of the time, which means he’s nimble, quick to the ball, he’s got a quick twitch.”

Withey had an impressive seven blocks against Ohio State in the national semi-final game on Saturday night. This will be fun to watch the post presence of both players to see who comes out on top.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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Kansas' Bill Self Calls Coach Of The Year Award A 'Terrific Honor'

The Kansas Jayhawks not only had an incredible season to remember, but the postseason is shaping up quite excellently as well. The Jayhawks won their eighth straight Big 12 conference title in 2011-12, and now they’re down to the final two competing for the title of National Champs. That performance taken together has earned Bill Self the Naismith Coach of the Year trophy.

"This is a terrific honor. When you think of postseason awards, anything that has (James) Nasmith’s name in front of it is a huge award and certainly I’m very proud of this," Self said. "It is a reflection of how our team performed all year long. There are so many good coaches out there to choose from, but I am honored they picked me."

Kansas has their biggest obstacle yet in front of them when they face Kentucky tonight in New Orleans. The team is loaded with NBA ready talent led by Anthony Davis. Then again, Self has been playing favored teams at several points this year and come out ahead. Tonight is just another chance for the Jayhawks to shine when they’re not expected to.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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VIDEO: Bomani Jones Predicts Kentucky, Anthony Davis Will Defeat Kansas

SB Nation's Bomani Jones is flowing with the mainstream crowd on his latest prediction for the winner of the 2012 NCAA Tournament final game by going with Anthony Davis and the Kentucky Wildcats. He has good reason, since Kentucky has been the favored team since the preseason and throughout this entire year. Davis and the rest of John Calipari's team is simply that good.

But Kansas has fought its way back in every game, and they have their own All-American in Thomas Robinson. This is a clash of two of the greatest coaches, two of the greatest players and two of the greatest programs in college basketball history. In short, this should be a close game the entire way. Watch Bomani's vid below to hear his reasons:


For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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Kansas Vs. Kentucky: Elijah Johnson Says 'No One Wants To Be Second'

As Kansas and Kentucky gear up for the national title game for all of the bragging rights of the 2011-12 college basketball season, perhaps Jayhawks’ guard sums it up best: “no one wants to be second.” When speaking yesterday in the media sessions for players, Johnson described the feeling for both teams right now on the eve of the biggest game of their lives.

"These are the two best teams in the country," said Johnson. "Obviously, I feel like no one wants to be second. I don’t think Coach (John) Calipari wants to be the second best coach in the country, and I don’t think we do. With that being said, everybody is playing with house money. If you are go out there feeling like you’ve got to save something, you are going to come up short."

Johnson is averaging 9.6 points per game this year for the Jayhawks, but has come up big in the last several games scoring 15, 18, 11, 10 and 13 throughout the tourney so far.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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Kansas Vs. Kentucky, NCAA Championship 2012: Thomas Robinson Says 'I Want Payback'

As the star players of the Kansas Jayhawks think back to their first meeting with Kentucky this season, it’s clear that they both have ill feelings about the loss to the Wildcats early in the season. Thus it’s not surprising to hear Tyshawn Taylor and Thomas Robinson speak about how much they want to right what went wrong the last time these teams met in tonight’s national championship game.

"It’s extra motivation. I want payback," junior forward Robinson said. "I don’t want anyone to think they have the upper hand on me, and I’ve thought that all season about Kentucky, but I get to see them again."

"When you play a team that beat you, you want another chance. We get another chance. It’s not like a revenge game, but it’s one of those things like, ‘We’re back … do it again,’’’ senior point guard Taylor said. "Basically, we want to make them come out and beat us. They’re going to have to play their best game of the year."

Tonight they will get their chance on the biggest possible stage in the Superdome at New Orleans. It’s the two winningest programs in college basketball history facing off for yet another banner to lift up into the rafters. For the Jayhawks, the revenge factor would be the icing on the cake.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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Kentucky Vs. Kansas: John Calipari Might Play Zone For Thomas Robinson

The final day is here. Kansas versus Kentucky will be played tonight in New Orleans for the national title, and so many are making this about the All-Americans involved: Thomas Robinson and Anthony David. Kentucky coach John Calipari says his team knows all about Robinson and is prepared to shift their play for him.

"We know how good Thomas Robinson is. We all know. We went against him in New York. He is as good as they get," Calipari said. "He’s a vicious competitor, great around the rim, expanded his game. He can make the top of the key 3. Loves driving that thing hard left and getting to the rim. He has become a better handler and passer, rebounds. So we know how good he is.I don’t really know who is going to guard him. We may play a 2-3 zone. Those guys are so big, we may fall into a zone. I haven’t played that very often, but we may do it."

It would be an odd move, but at the very least, While the All-American is definitely something opposing teams have to plan for, announcing such a big move to reporters is likely just playing the media and giving us all something to talk about. Robinson does present a match-up issue, especially with Jeff Withey also available inside. Maybe Calipari is in all of our heads now. We will find out soon enough.

For more on this game, visit Kentucky blog A Sea Of Blue and Kansas blog Rock Chalk Talk. Head over to SB Nation NCAA Basketball. For all your 2012 March Madness needs, stay tuned to SB Nation's dedicated NCAA Tournament hub.

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