Real championship was UConn-Duke
With all due respect to Georgia Tech, who had a
fabulous season, they were caught up in the moment and
didn't belong on the same court as the University of Connecticut men's basketball team. As UConn
disposed of Georgia Tech in the 2004 NCAA tournament championship game, 82-73, we're left with one
question: did the matchup between Duke vs. UConn take place one
round too early?
In reality Duke vs. UConn was the
championship round. Despite poor officiating, and some sloppy play by both sides, the game lived up to its billing.
Duke was the only team in the tournament to challenge
UConn. After UConn jumped out to the early 15-4 lead,
Emeka Okafor picked up his second foul & sat the remainder of
the half. From there, Duke took over and led by seven at
halftime. Once the second half started, the teams went
back and forth like two heavyweight prize fighters.
UConn got within 61-60; however Duke went on another
run to open up a 75-67 lead with 3 minutes left in the
game. For the first and only time all tournament,
UConn was met with adversity. That's when the Player
of the Year Emeka Okafor carried UConn on his
shoulders and scored 7 points down the stretch in
route to a 12-0 run to carry the Huskies over Duke by a
Once UConn overcame the huge obstacle that was Duke, the championship game on Monday
was nothing more than a formality.