This was not the final that everyone expected. Huge favorites Kentucky were eliminated in the Final Four on Saturday night after Frank Kaminsky, Sam Dekker and the experienced Wisconsin Badgers showed their heart and determination.
Duke, however, were favoured to defeat the 7th-seeded Michigan State and did so handily. Despite a valiant effort by Tom Izzo's Spartans, they were not able to overcome 'Coach K' and the talented Duke roster.
In the final we will see a flashy team, full of young talent and potential, in Duke. On the other end of the spectrum is Wisconsin, who do not start any freshman players and play with a more thought-out strategy, although they do have talent in their locker room, it is Wisconsin's seasoned experience that has gotten them to this position.
Wisonsin head coach Bo Ryan has won four National Titles, although at the Division III level. He will look to capture his first National Title at the Division I level on Monday.
The coach had this to say about his team's effort against Kentucky on Saturday: "These guys just gutted it out.
"We just kept battling on every possession."
That is exactly what the Badgers will have to do against Duke. If they can beat Kentucky they can beat anyone, they just can't take their foot of the gas.
Fifth Division I title?
Head coach for the Duke Blue Devils, Mike Krzyzewski will also be going for his fifth national title. Unlike Bo Ryan, his counterpart, Coach K's titles have all come from the Division I level. Coach K talked about his team after defeating Michigan State.
"The defense was terrific," he said.
"We drove the ball with such strength. I actually think our offense gave our defense a push."
If Duke want to win the NCAA Championship they will need to play with that intensity, but more amplified against a tough Wisconsin team.
Jahlil Okafor, Duke: Okafor is the star player of a talented Duke team. He is widely considered to be the first overall draft pick in next years NBA Draft. He is a great athlete and has so much potential. His performance can make or break Duke's chances at winning a National Title. Okafor was awarded with the 2014 National Player of the Year Award.
Stat Line: PPG- 17.5 RPG- 8.6 APG- 1.3 BPG- 1.5 SPG- 0.8
Frank Kaminsky, Wiscnosin: Kaminsky is in his senior year and has been a leader of the Wisconsin Badgers during that time. He is a 7-foot centre and has a great shooting touch. Kaminsky is expected to be a lottery pick in next years NBA Draft. Before Frank looks ahead to his NBA career he wants to finish out his legacy, and winning the National Title would be a fitting way to do so. On April 3rd, Kaminsky was named the AP Player of the Year. The first Wisconsin player to ever win the award.
Stat Line: PPG- 18.7 RPG- 8.1 APG- 2.7 BPG- 1.5 SPG- 0.8
The National Title Verdict: Wisconsin Badgers
The Badgers just have to much experience and desire to win the championship. Many of the Duke players will go on to greater things in the NBA, but for a lot of Wisconsin players, this may be their highlight. The talent is slightly on the side of Duke, but the heart is on the side of Wisconsin.
Who will win the NCAA showdown - have your say in the comments below? Will it be the Badgers or the Blue Devils?
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