Advertisement

Our coronavirus coverage is free for the first 24 hours. Find the latest information at tampabay.com/coronavirus. Please consider subscribing or donating.

  1. Archive

MEN'S FINAL FOUR

INDIANA HOOSIERS

LOCATION: Bloomington.

ENROLLMENT: 36,000.

CONFERENCE: Big Ten.

COACH: Mike Davis (45-24, second season).

KEY PLAYER: Jared Jeffries. The sophomore forward, a second-team All-American and his league's most valuable player, is easily the most gifted, versatile Hoosier. Although a lean 215 pounds, he can play inside with his combination of height (6-10), long arms and dizzying quickness. He had nine offensive rebounds against Duke. He also can play outside (26-for-69 on 3-point attempts).

ROAD TO FINAL FOUR: The fifth-seeded Hoosiers beat Utah 75-56, North Carolina Wilmington 76-67, Duke 74-73 and Kent State 81-69.

FINAL FOUR HISTORY: The Hoosiers are in the Final Four for the eighth time (1940, 1953, 1973, 1976, 1981, 1987 and 1992). They won the title five times (1940, 1953, 1976, 1981 and 1987).

THE LOWDOWN: There's nothing fancy about IU. But the Hoosiers play with remarkable tenacity and have a dangerous inside-outside balance. They hit 15 of 19 3-pointers against Kent State. But they need junior point guard Tom Coverdale on the court. He sprained his left ankle Saturday.

FAMOUS ALUM: Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks; Jane Pauley, co-host of NBC's Dateline; Kevin Kline, actor.

DID YOU KNOW?: The Hoosiers have won four straight, matching their longest winning streak of the season.

OKLAHOMA SOONERS

LOCATION: Norman.

ENROLLMENT: 28,000.

CONFERENCE: Big 12.

COACH: Kelvin Sampson (187-73, eighth season; 363-221 overall).

KEY PLAYER: Hollis Price. The junior point guard is fast and can shoot from way outside. Price, the most outstanding player of the West Region, scored 18 in the region title game against Missouri.

ROAD TO FINAL FOUR: The second-seeded Sooners beat Illinois-Chicago 71-63, Xavier 78-65, Arizona 88-67 and league rival Missouri 81-75.

FINAL FOUR HISTORY: OU is in the Final Four for the fourth time (1939, 1947 and 1988). It lost to conference rival Kansas in the 1988 championship game.

THE LOWDOWN: The Sooners haven't received the kind of attention you'd expect from a big-time program in a big-time league, but that's going to change. Price and senior forward Aaron McGhee are a solid 1-2 scoring punch and OU's in-your-face-defense can shut down anyone. It held Kansas to 19 first-half points in the Big 12 tournament finale.

FAMOUS ALUM: Lee Roy Selmon, football player; J.C. Watts, football player and U.S. Congressman.

DID YOU KNOW?: The Sooners have won 12 straight and during the season beat Kansas, Maryland and UConn.

KANSAS JAYHAWKS

LOCATION: Lawrence.

ENROLLMENT: 27,838.

CONFERENCE: Big 12.

COACH: Roy Williams (388-92, 14th season).

KEY PLAYER: Drew Gooden. The 6-10 junior forward, a first-team All-American and the National Association of Basketball Coaches co-player of the year, is dominant at both ends. He had 18 points and 20 rebounds against Oregon in the Midwest Region final and was the most outstanding player.

ROAD TO FINAL FOUR: The top-seeded Jayhawks beat Holy Cross 70-59, Stanford 86-63, Illinois 73-69 and Oregon 104-86.

FINAL FOUR HISTORY: The Jayhawks are in the Final Four for the 11th time (1940, 1952, 1953, 1957, 1971, 1974, 1986, 1988, 1991 and 1993) and won the championship in 1952 and 1988.

THE LOWDOWN: Kansas probably has the nation's best inside combination of Gooden and 6-10 junior forward Nick Collison. Both are quick and mobile. But what has separated KU has been Coach Williams' use of three speedy guards, junior Kirk Hinrich, senior Jeff Boschee and freshman Aaron Miles. That spreads the floor offensively and provides three decisionmakers.

FAMOUS ALUM: Phog Allen and Dean Smith, basketball coaches; Wilt Chamberlain, basketball player.

DID YOU KNOW?: Williams' team had been a No. 1 seed four other times (1992, 1995, 1997 and 1998) and didn't make it to the national semifinals.

MARYLAND TERRAPINS

LOCATION: College Park.

ENROLLMENT: 33,000.

CONFERENCE: Atlantic Coast Conference.

COACH: Gary Williams (272-143, 13th season; 479-271 overall).

KEY PLAYER: Juan Dixon. The lithe senior guard, a consensus first-team All-American and the ACC player of the year (not Jason Williams), is Maryland's all-time scorer. He's also a dogged defender with quick hands, capable of changing the game at both ends.

ROAD TO FINAL FOUR: The top-seeded Terrapins beat Siena 85-70, Wisconsin 87-57, Kentucky 78-68 and UConn 90-82.

FINAL FOUR HISTORY: Maryland reached the national semifinals for the first time last season, squandering a double-digit lead for the third time in losing to archrival and eventual champion Duke.

THE LOWDOWN: Maryland has a dynamic scorer in Dixon on the perimeter, a dominating center in Lonny Baxter and dazzling, ever-improving 6-10 sophomore forward Chris Wilcox. The Terps also have the nation's top assist man, junior point guard Steve Blake, and experienced complementary players such as senior forward Byron Mouton, junior guard Drew Nicholas and junior forward Tahj Holden.

FAMOUS ALUM: Len Bias, basketball player; Jim Henson, Muppets creator; Bonnie Bernstein, CBS.

DID YOU KNOW?: The Terrapins won the ACC regular-season title outright for the first time since 1980 and earned a No. 1 seed for the first time.

_ Compiled by Brian Landman.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Advertisement
Advertisement