|Written by Michael|
Bet on NCAABThe short lesson of last night's NCAA Championship game between Butler and UConn is that you can not shoot 18% from the field and expect to win a national title.
Both the Huskies and Bulldogs had trouble hitting their shots, making the game one of the ugliest in NCAA history. The game set or came close to tying numerous records for poor performances.
Butler managed to put in just three field goals inside the paint, setting a new record for how useless their offense was during the game. Previous records had been held by Oklahoma State in 1949 (9), Indiana in 2002 (10), and North Carolina in 1946 (13). But three total is a dismal performance, and one of the main reasons Butler could never find a rhythm.
The Bulldogs' 18.8% shooting was also one of the worst in NCAA Championship history, and you could make an argument that it was the worst performance ever. Their desperate attempts to land a couple of three-point shots were also misguided, as they put up 33 total threes. Only Illinois in 2005 attempted more during a title game at 40.
The game as a whole, though, was just ugly. UConn did slightly better, but the two teams scored only a combined 94 points. That is one of the lowest-scoring title games in history and you have to search all the way back for comparison to 1949's title game where Oklahoma State and Kentucky scored a combined 82 points. Four minutes into last night's game, it was a 4-3 contest.
UConn had their own troubles from the field, especially from three-point land. The Huskies were 1-for-11 from behind the arc, tying the worst performance in NCAA Championship history. In the 1990 title game against UNLV, Duke also shot 1-for-11, although Duke went on to lose. Connecticut had the worst three-point percentage in history for a winning team.
And that's how most people will remember the 2011 NCAA title game: as an ugly, low-scoring affair where both teams had trouble making their shots fall. A lot of people were rooting for the Dogs to finish up last year's business, but UConn put together one of the most remarkable runs on the way to winning this title. Congrats to the Huskies, but a game that was less of a grind would have been more exciting for all of us watching.