UCONN on a Roll

By Richard G. Kent BASN Staff Writer
Updated: March 27, 2011

Kemba Walker

Kemba Walker

CONN.—It could not be a more improbable run. Not for a team picked 10th preseason in the Big East. Not for a team which finished 9-9 in the Big East. Not for a team without a real threat underneath.

Not with standing, UConn is in its 2nd Final Four in 3 years with a 65-63 win over a very strong and also surprising Arizona team.

That’s right,a 3 seed beat a 5 seed to get to the Final four after the path was cleared with Arizona running Duke out of the building in the second half of the Sweet 16 game.

The Elite 8 game was one of runs. Arizona opened up early with their power underneath but then star Derrick Williams picked up his second foul early on and Sean Miller took him out. Miller though tried to answer a UConn run by putting Williams in but he picked up his third foul within 30 seconds and it looked like UConn might coast to victory.

Not so fast. Williams started the second half and was a force inside and out.

Arizona went on a 12-2 run to take the lead but then came Jeremy Lamb. The UConn freshman hit key shot after shot and made defensive stops when needed.

UConn took a 2 point lead into the last Arizona possession and Miller elected to go for 3 despite having a stronger inside game. His team missed two 3-pointer in the last 10 seconds and UConn celebrated.

To say that this is Jim Calhoun’s best coaching job ever is an understatement. His team is young,lacks an inside game and relies on one player,Kemba Walker. That one player,along with Jimmer Fredette may be the best player in the country.

Many have criticized Calhoun’s half court offense in the past despite his two National Championships. Not this year. He has parlayed three players,Walker,Lamb and Shabazz Napier into potent offensive threats. His move of Walker to the 2 from the point against San Diego State was one of brilliance.

Will UConn win it all?Perhaps. UConn fans feel that they are playing with house money in Houston.

Not Calhoun or his players. They will be going there to win and to win it all.

Don’t count them out.