Who won March Madness 2023?
UConn caps an impressive March Madness run with its fifth national title.
HOUSTON — After six games and 240 minutes of pure dominance spanning March and then part of April, it finally became clear there was only one thing that could stop the UConn Huskies.
The Storrs, Connecticut team capped one of the most impressive March Madness runs in history on Monday night by retiring early and then breaking things up late for their fifth national title with a 76-59 win over the state Bringing San Diego home.
“We knew we were the best team in the tournament and we just had to play at our level,” said Dan Hurley, who became the third coach alongside Jim Calhoun and Kevin Ollie to lead UConn to a title.
UConn’s lanky star forward Adama Sanogo was named Most Outstanding Player in the Finals with 17 points and 10 rebounds, and Tristen Newton also had a double-double with 19 points and 10 boards.
The Huskies (31-8) became the fifth team as the mount has expanded In 1985, he won all six NCAA tournament games by double digits en route to a championship. They won those six games by an average of a straight 20 points, a fraction less than North Carolina won the 2009 title.
UConn built a 16-point lead late in the first half, only to see the Aztecs (32-7) cut the lead to five at 5-19. But Jordan Hawkins (16 points) — whose cousin, LSU’s Angel Reese, won MOP honors in the women’s tournament — responded with a 3 to spark a 9-0 run. From there, the only drama left was whether UConn would cover the 7 1/2 point spread and win six-for-six with double-digit wins.
Keshad Johnson scored 14 points for State of San Diego, who fell a win short in his first appearance in the Final Four. Darrion Trammell and Lamont Butler each had 13.
UConn, the most popular and best-seeded 4th place team for this Final Four, set the stage for this win over a 11:07 stretch in the first half, in which the Aztecs didn’t make a single goal. Unable to shoot over or sidestep this big, long UConn team, they missed 14 straight shots from the ground.
They went from a four lead to 11 adrift and unless they blocked shots (Alex Karaban had three and Sanogo had one) or were changed inside they came up short – a telltale sign for a team that was after this one 72-71 buzzer beater win over Florida Atlantic two nights before no more hops.
UConn fan Bill Murray was one of the few celebrities to watch as the Huskies went five to five in title games in one of the most unexpected Final Fours in history. This one here was the last Jim Nantz would name after 37 years behind the mic.
He had many UConn stories to tell, although this certainly wasn’t the most dramatic.
Even with that brief bout of uncertainty midway through the second half, UConn never really let the fifth-seeded Aztecs, who came from a 14-point deficit in the semis, think about more last-second drama.
This was a team built solely for 2023 — complemented by Hurley, who didn’t get much love even in preseason after going to the transfer portal to find more outside shooting after back-to-back eliminations in the first round of the tournament.
“We weren’t ranked at the beginning of the year, so we had the chip on our shoulders,” said the coach. “We knew what level we could play at, even in those dark times.”
Despite the New Age roster, there was something decidedly old-school about the way the Huskies went about their business in the early days.
They didn’t even think much about 3-point shooting early on – only making one more than 13 minutes into the game – instead skipping the pass into Sanogo at the post and wearing down SDSU while building the early lead.
The Aztecs were too good a team to back down, and too strong a defense was the reason for the late run to five. But the team built on defense finished the game with just a 32% shot from the ground.
And after his late run, the Aztecs started getting burned, and Hurley and co. hugged him on the bench before the buzzer.
UConn’s latest crowning makes Hurley the third coach to bring home a trophy for Storrs. He joins Calhoun (1999, 2004, 2001) and Ollie (2014).
“We’ve got four national championships ahead of us, right?” Hurley said. “We aimed for 5th place. Now we have our own.”
And Sanogo — do that Adama — adds itself to others by first name on this campus — along with Huskies legends like Kemba (Walker), Rip (Hamilton), and Emeka (Okafor). He averaged 19.7 points and 9.8 rebounds over UConn’s six-game cruise through the tournament.
https://www.kvue.com/article/sports/ncaa/ncaab/march-madness/uconn-wins-march-madness-sdsu/507-f4dffc2b-c8a1-4fa3-a747-8000ea1e022e Who won March Madness 2023?