OK. People in Kentucky, don't call me a jinx, but there is the potential for some major celebrations in Louisville coming soon. Louisville is the school to beat in both the men's and women's college Division I basketball title games. The Lady Cardinals of Louisville will face Connecticut in the championship game Tuesday. We'll have more on that in a minute. First, it's Louisville against Michigan in tonight's men's final.
NPR's Mike Pesca reports from Atlanta, where some of the best seats don't always have the best view.
TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: And this is Tom Goldman in New Orleans where the Louisville women's team continued its surprising run through the tournament. It followed up stunners over Baylor and Tennessee with a 64 to 57 come-from-behind semi-final win over California last night. Louisville guard Antonita Slaughter made six out of 10 three-point shots and head coach Jeff Walz was left to explain, again, how the Cards are doing it.
JEFF WALZ: And we're figuring out a way to pull them out and win and play well at the right time.
Michigan beat Syracuse 61-56 Saturday night and Louisville also won a close contest edging Wichita by 4 points.The Wolverines play the Cardinals on Monday in Atlanta for the national championship. Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin talks about the how the upcoming title game.
With a single, devastating shot, Ali Farokhmanesh became the face of the NCAA basketball tournament in 2010.
He nailed the 3-pointer that propelled the ninth-seeded Northern Iowa Panthers to a major upset victory over the tournament favorite, Kansas Jayhawks. It also put him on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
Louisville guard Shoni Schimmel (23) and the Louisville bench react to her 3-point shot against Tennessee in the second half of the regional final in the NCAA women's college basketball tournament in Oklahoma City on Tuesday. Louisville won 86-78.
A women's Final Four without Baylor, Stanford or Tennessee? That's happened only one other time in the last dozen years. We've become so used to it being a power party, that it's downright disorienting.
Or maybe that's just vertigo from trying to track the movements of the Final Four's breakout star, Louisville guard Shoni Schimmel. She's a big reason why two of those teams — Tennessee and Baylor — aren't in New Orleans for a chance at the title.
Any recreational league basketball team, any police athletic league squad and every group of 8-year-olds who wear the same uniform are, on the first or second day of practice, introduced to the 2-3 zone defense.
The coach will say, "On defense, you two short guys stay near the foul line, and you three bigger kids, you go down near the basket. Put your hands up, and you're now playing the 2-3."