The Final Four consisted ofnothing but “Blue Bloods” so it was no surprise the title game would consist of two tough college teams that would display a gritty battle until the end.
North Carolina took an early lead and finished the first half leading Kansas by 15 points (40-25). That would not be a big enough lead as the pendulum moved in favor of the Jayhawks in the second half.
Kansas played an aggressive half and clawed at North Carolina and their lead through much of the first 10 minutes of the second half. The team would have a few ties before a Remy Martin three gave the Jayhawks the lead for good with just under three minutes in the game.
Despite a 16-point deficit at one point in the game, Kansas would go on to defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels 72-69 to overcome the largest deficit in a title game and win the National Championship.
Remember: It’s not how you start, it is how you finish. Just ask Bill Self and his Jayhawks.
Bill Self is the first Kansas head coach to win two national titles.
First five players listed below started the National Championship game and the rest came off the bench.
- Jalen Wilson- 34 minutes, 15 points, 5/13 FG, 1/4 3PT, 4/4 FT, an offensive rebound, 4 total rebounds, 2 assists, and a block.
- David McCormack- 29 minutes, 15 points, 7/15 FG, 1/2 FT, 3 offensive rebounds, 10 total rebounds, a steal, a block, and a turnover.
- Dajuan Harris Jr.- 27 minutes, 2 points, 1/5 FG, 0/1 3PT, 3 assists, 3 steals, a block, and 4 turnovers.
- Christian Braun- 40 minutes, 12 points, 6/14 FG, 0/1 3PT, an offensive rebound, 12 total rebounds, 3 assists, and a turnover.
- Ochai Agbaji- 37 minutes, 12 points, 4/9 FG, 1/4 3PT, 3/8 FT, an offensive rebounds, 3 total rebounds, an assist, a steal, a block, and 2 turnovers.
- K.J. Adams- 3 minutes.
- Mitch Lightfoot- 7 minutes, 2 points, 1/1 FG, an offensive rebound, and an assist.
- Remy Martin- 21 minutes, 14 points, 5/9 FG, 4/6 3PT, 3 rebounds, an assist, a steal, a block, and a turnover.
- Jalen Coleman Lands- 2 minutes and a rebound.
- Armando Bacot- 38 minutes, 15 points, 3/13 FG, 9/13 FT, 6 offensive rebounds, 15 total rebounds, 2 assists, a steal, a block, and 3 turnovers.
- Brady Manek- 36 minutes, 13 points, 4/8 FG, 3/6 3PT, 2/2 FT, 5 offensive rebounds, 13 total rebounds, 4 blocks, and 2 turnovers.
- R.J. Davis- 40 minutes, 15 points, 5/17 FG, 0/5 3PT, 5/5 FT, 6 offensive rebounds, 12 total rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 turnovers.
- Caleb Love- 36 minutes, 5/24 FG, 1/8 3PT, 2/2 FT, an offensive rebound, 3 total rebounds, 3 assists, a block, and 4 turnovers.
- Leaky Black- 30 minutes, 2 points, 1/2 FG, 0/1 3PT, 2 assists, a steal, and a turnover.
- Justin McKoy- 2 minutes.
- Puff Johnson- 18 minutes, 11 points, 5/9 FG, 2 offensive rebounds, 6 total rebounds, and an assist.
- Provided the spark off the bench and even puked mid-game.
Wild But True
Jalen Coleman-Lands gets to wrap up his college hoop days as a National Champion. After 7 seasons and 4 different teams, he gets to say he finished on top.
Coleman-Lands began his college career back in 2015 at Illinois. He spent just 2 seasons there before heading to the city and spend three with the DePaul Blue Demons. He would not be done yet, after a strong 2019-2020 season with the Blue Demons, he decided to transfer yet again to Iowa State. There he took another leap and saw career-highs in his stats.
He would not call it quits just yet. Prior to this season with the help off the COVID waiver, Coleman-Land transferred to Kansas.
This season, he played 39 games while starting just one and averaged a career-low 3.7 points in 8.2 minutes game.
He not just earned him a national championship but got to make a little more history along the way. This season helped him move up in the history books for a category that is not as talked about as others. That category being: most collegiate games played.
His 172 games played is tied for second all-time with Chevez Goodwin. Coleman-Lands and Goodwin sit behind Iowa’s Jordan Bohannon who played 179 game from 2016-2022.
Bolingbrook High school grad Joseph Yesufu is a National Championship with the Jayhawks win over the Tar Heels.
He did play in the championship game but did come off the bench in 34 of Kansas’ 40 games. Yesufu averaged 2.1 points, 0.9 rebounds, and an assist in just 9.3 per game in his first season as a Jayhawk.
He’ll take on a bigger role come next season.