Monthly Archives: April 2018

NCAA National Championship 2018: 11 things to for watch Monday Michigan vs Villanova game

The NCAA tournament is a two-team duel now, and here are 11 things that might — or might not — happen Monday night in the Alamodome.

1. Villanova’s Jay Wright, say hello to the 13 coaches who have won multiple national championships. “You can’t say it’s a dream come true because you don’t even dream about it,” he said Saturday night, after the Wildcats crunched Kansas 95-79. “You don’t dream about getting two out of three years. You don’t think about it. I don’t.”

2. At the end of the day, after all the disarray of this NCAA tournament, a No. 1 seed is finishing one of the most dominant runs in memory. Villanova has won all five games by double digits, by an average margin of 17.8. The last champion to win all six by double figures was North Carolina in 2009. The throttling of Kansas, that included 13 3-pointers in the first half at one end and suffocating defense at the other, could not have been more impressive.

“They were unbelievable,” Jayhawks coach Bill Self said from the wrong end of that score. “If I ever watch the game tape — which I know what happened, so I probably won’t — I’ll think more about how good Villanova was.”

And from the right end: “Just one of those nights,” Wright said. “We made every shot to start the game.”

3.) An ugly championship game. For Michigan’s sake, the uglier the better. Because if it’s an offensive show . . .

“That’s not what we hang our hat on, or shot-making ability,” the Wolverines’ Duncan Robinson was saying. “We hang our hats on the defensive end.”

Michigan has allowed one opponent to break 70 in regulation in seven weeks. That stat is about to get a stern challenge.

4.) The team record for 3-pointers in a national championship game is 12. Does anyone expect Villanova – after 13 in the first 17 minutes Saturday night – not to shatter it?

5.) Only the fifth meeting between these two schools in history. One was a 59-55 Villanova win in the second round in 1985, part of the Wildcats’ ride to the title. They’re not the No. 8 seed this time.

6.) Michigan becoming the 16th school with multiple championships, while ending the Big Ten’s 17-year title drought and becoming only the third No. 3 seed to win the title in 29 years. “It’s something we always talk about,” Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman said. “That’s how you’re remembered at the University of Michigan, it’s by championships.”

7.) Jalen Brunson adding the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four to national player of the year – a rare double, indeed. Not that he’s thinking much about it. “You cherish a championship and these bonds for a long time,” he said. “Those awards only last for so long.” Then again, he won’t win the MOP if teammate Eric Paschall goes 10-for-11 shooting and 4-for-5 in 3-pointers again.

8.) Moe Wagner, Michigan hero for the ages if he can pull this off.

9.) Villanova losing the edge after Saturday’s virtuoso performance.

10.) Or not. Doesn’t sound like they plan on it.

Not from Donte DiVincenzo: “When we came in (the locker room), we knew we were in the national championship game. You have to take that in for a second, you have to recognize it, and then you have to move forward.”

Nor Brunson: “We’ll try to be the best team we can be on Monday night. That’s all we’ve worked for, to be the best team we can be by the end of the year.”

Nor Omari Spellman: “Just coming out, ready to compete and defend and rebound and continue to do what we do. We don’t pride ourselves on shooting the ball well. We pride ourselves on defending and rebounding, and that’s our true measure of success in playing Villanova basketball.

“We will celebrate when the job is done.”

11.) And finally, Michigan a big enough underdog in some eyes to almost be Loyola — without the nun.

“We know they’re a great team, because they’ve gotten to this point,” DiVincenzo said.

“We’re still hungry. We feel like we can be national champions,” Abdur-Rahkman said.

That was right after Michigan’s victory, before he knew who the Wolverines would be playing. A few minutes later, Villanova led Kansas 22-4.

Villanova to meet Michigan in NCAA national championship 2018 game

It’s Final Four Saturday. San Antonio’s Alamodome is home to the semi-final round of the NCAA Men’s basketball tournament. The last four teams standing were No. 3 seed Michigan, No. 11 Loyola-Chicago, No. 1 Villanova and No. 3 Kansas. They will compete in the semi-finals for a chance to become this year’s national champion.

Michigan (32-7) defeated Loyola-Chicago (32-5) in the first game of the evening. The Wolverines were a -5.5 favorite and covered the spread, defeating the Ramblers by a score of 69-57.

And Villanova (34-3) defeated Kansas (31-7) with a final score of 95-79. Ahead of the game, the Wildcats were a five-point favorite to advance to the final.

Villanova defeats Kansas

Villanova wins 95-79 and will play in their second National Championship game in the past three years.

After their 11-point run in the first half, the Wildcats never looked back. They led by 15 at the half and kept a double-digit lead through the entire second half.

Eric Paschall led Nova with 24 points. Devonte’ Graham had 23 for Kansas.

Along the way they set a record. Their 18 3-pointers are now the most number of field goals outside the arc in a Final Four game.

The NCAA National Championship game is now set. Villanova will face No. 3 Michigan Monday night at 9:30 p.m. ET.


  • Villanova hits their first mid-range shot

    13:12: Villanova hits their first mid-range shot tonight. They have yet to attempt a mid-range shot or a free throw, but have hit 17 from outside the arc or 50% of the 34 they’ve attempted.

    11:58: Commercial time out. Villanova has a 20-point lead over Kansas, 67-47.

  • Second half is underway

    Villanova started the second half empty. As Kansas turned down the court, Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk was fouled and made both his free throws.

    Taking the ball down the court, Phil Booth’s shot is blocked, but Eric Paschall got the rebound and sank his fourth jump shot from 3-point range. Villanova is up 50-34 over Kansas.

Villanova leads Kansas at half

At the half, Villanova leads by 15. The 47 points the Wildcats have scored is the most Kansas has allowed in the tournament so far. Villanova is 13/26 from 3-point range.

Jalen Brunson leads the Wildcats with 13, while Devonte’ Graham leads the Jayhawks with 10.

The story of this game has been Villanova’s shooting from outside the arc. Villanova is 17-for-33, Kansas 13-for-30. The difference, thus far, is Villanova’s 13 three-pointers. All but seven of their shots have been from behind the three-point line.

The Wildcats’ 13 3-point field goals ties a Final Four record for most 3-point shots made.

Another record for Villanova

Villanova has held a 3-point shooting clinic Saturday evening. The Wildcats are 15-of-27 on field goals tonight. Thirteen of those are 3-pointers.

Meanwhile, Kansas is 11 for 24, shooting 2-of-4 from downtown.

​Kansas goes on a 7-point run

The Jayhawks have scored seven unanswered points, cutting Villanova’s lead in halt. Coming off the bench, Silvio De Sousa scored five in the past two minutes of play. Villanova is up 28-15.



Nova breaks NCAA 3-point record

The Wildcats broke the NCAA men’s basketball single season record for made 3-pointers Saturday — and there’s still 12:46 to go in the first half. The teamhit 443 3-pointers this year.

They lead the Jayhawks 22-4.

​Villanova is on fire

Villanova came out the gates hot and immediately went on an 11-o run. The Wildcats lead the Kansas Jayhawks 16-4.

Freshman forward Omari Spellman leads the team with six.

Next up: Kansas vs. Villanova

Kansas and Villanova are warming up ahead of tip-off. The winner will meet Michigan in the national championship. The game is scheduled for Monday night at 9:20 p.m. ET on TBS.

This is Villanova’s second Final Four appearance in the last three years. Kansas is returning to the city and arena where it won its last NCAA title in 2008, CBS Sports writes.

Michigan defeats Loyola-Chicago

On the shoulders of junior Moritz Wagner, the Michigan Wolverines have defeated the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers 69-57.

Michigan went on a 38-16 run to close the game. Wagner lead Michigan with 24 points and Charles Matthews had 17.

The Wolverines will play for its first NCAA national championship since 1989 on Monday.

For Loyola-Chicago: Cameron Krutwig led the Ramblers with 17 points. Custer finished with 15 on the night and a career-high 14 rebounds.

​Loyola-Chicago looks for a prayer

Down eight points with only a minute left, the Ramblers have begun fouling Michigan to conserve time on the clock. Michigan leads 68-57.

​Michigan leads by 10

The Wolverines are up 61-51 against the Loyola-Chicago Ramblers. Michigan junior Moritz Wagner leads the team with 24 points with 2 minutes to go.

Marcus Towns leaves, returns to game after quad injury

Marcus Towns leaves, returns to game after quad injury

Marcus Townes momentarily left the game after dealing with cramping in his left thigh. He’s now back in the game with 6:02 to go. Michigan leads 51-47.

​Michigan closes the gap

The Wolverines have cut the 10 point deficit to a 3-point lead. Loyola-Chicago leads 47-44 with 7 minutes to play. Michigan fifth-year senior Duncan Robinson hit two big 3-pointers in the second half. He currently has six points. His team is 28-0 when he scores six points or more.

Loyola-Chicago leads by 10

For the second time tonight, Loyola went up by 10 points over Michigan. The Ramblers lead the Wolverines 41-31.

Clayton Custer now has 9 points for the Ramblers. They’ve answered back every time Michigan has scored.

Ramblers lead Wolverines at halftime

The Ramblers are leading the Wolverines 29-22 at halftime. Cameron Krutwig and Marques Townes lead Loyola-Chicago with 8 points each. Meanwhile, Moritz Wagner has 11 and Charles Matthews has 8 points for Michigan.

Loyola-Chicago is 24-0 when leading at halftime this year, according to ESPN Stats & Info

Ramblers take the lead back

Loyola tied it up with 6:47 left in the first half.

After some back-and-forth, Loyola went to the line and took two more. Towns added another bucket from inside the paint, securing a 9-point run for Loyola.

Half-way through the first half, Michigan up by one

After starting quick, Loyola was having trouble finding a bucket. Michigan went on a 9-point run. During that time, Loyola was 2-for-9. They could find the rim, but couldn’t get many to go down.

Then both teams just went over seven minutes without a basket on either side. Michigan has been suffocating Loyola, but the Ramblers are starting to find their way back into the game.

​Ramblers struggle to find their shot

Loyola-Chicago has struggled to find their shot early in Saturday’s game. They’ve missed their last six shots. After a 9-0 run, Michigan leads 12-4 with 12:30 to go in the first half.


Michigan vs. Loyola-Chicago starting lineups

Michigan is the home team in tonight’s game. Here’s the starting five:

Zavier Simpson
Charles Matthews
Moe Wagner
Isiah Livers
Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman

The starter’s for Loyola-Chicago are below:

Marques Townes
Ben Richardson
Clayton Custer
Donte Ingram
Cameron Krutwig




Michigan® silences Loyola-Chicago to make National Championship™ game

Michigan returns to the national championship game for the first time since 2013, with a 69-57 win against Loyola in a national semifinal of the 2018 Final Four on Saturday, March 31. Find the score, live updates and stats for the Final Four game.

Michigan advances to the National Championship Game on Monday, April 2, to play either Villanova or Kansas.

2018 NCAA Tournament: Michigan-Loyola score, live updates

FINAL: Michigan 69, Loyola 57. Moritz Wagner scored 24 points and Charles Matthews added 17 in the win against Loyola.

Second half

Michigan 68, Loyola 57 (0:27.9, 2H): Michigan is securing its ticket to the national championship game by hitting late free throws against the Ramblers.

Michigan 59, Loyola 51 (3:27, 2H): Michigan is now running away with the game, after a 3-pointer by Wagner.

Michigan 51, Loyola 47 (5:48, 2H): A quick swing has given the lead back to Michigan. Wagner hit a huge 3-pointer with 6:59 left in the game to tie the game at 47-47, followed by Poole’s free throws and Charles Matthews’ layup — a seven-point swing for the Wolverines.

Loyola 47, Michigan 44 (7:31, 2H): Michigan continues to chip away at Loyola’s lead, after Jordan Poole’s layup, but Loyola lost Townes to a left leg injury (cramping, per CBS) with 7:31 left in the second half. Townes had eight points and seven rebounds for the Ramblers

Loyola 45, Michigan 42 (10:06, 2H): And there’s Duncan Robinson. Robinson hits his second 3-pointer to cut Loyola’s lead to 3 midway through the second half. It’s only Michigan’s fourth 3-pointer, but it could be a big one. The Wolverines need to take advantage of their outside shooting.

Loyola 43, Michigan 37 (11:42, 2H): Jaaron Simmons hits his first 3-pointer to cut Loyola’s lead to 6. The Wolverines are 6 for 12 from the floor in the second half, but Loyola has made four of its last five shots.

Loyola 41, Michigan 31 (14:00, 2H): Charles Matthews cut Michigan’s lead to 5, but the Ramblers answered with their first 3-pointer of the night, from Clayton Custer. Loyola is 1 for 5 on 3-pointers.

Loyola 32, Michigan 24 (18:47, 2H): Krutwig opens the second half with a three point play to open Loyola’s lead to 10 points, but Michigan answers with a quick basket.

Duncan Robinson was on the floor as Michigan opened the second half. The Wolverines need a spark from behind the perimeter; they went 0 for 3 on 3-point shooting in the first half.

HALFTIME: Loyola 29, Michigan 22: Krutwig hit a turnaround jumper with less than 40 seconds left in the half, and after Wagner missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 17.8 seconds left, Donte Ingram’s jumper just before the buzzer opened Loyola’s lead to seven points.

Wagner has a double-double for Michigan: 11 points and 11 rebounds. Krutwig, Townes and Aundre Jackson each have eight points for the Ramblers, who are 10 for 24 from the floor.

Michigan is 9 for 31 from the floor — Wagner and Charles Matthews are a combined 8-for-16 on shooting.

First half

Loyola 21, Michigan 19 (3:40, 1H): This game is defense first. The Ramblers are 7 for 18 from the floor, while Michigan is 8 for 27. Furthermore, a 9-0 run has helped lift Loyola to its first lead.

Loyola 17, Michigan 15 (5:53, 1H): Loyola ties the game on Cameron Krutwig’s layup, then takes the lead with 5:56 left in the first half of Krutwig’s two free throws.

Michigan 12, Loyola 10 (9:19, 1H): Marques Townes hits a jumper as the shot clock expires to cut Michigan’s lead to 2 points. Still, Michigan’s size is making things difficult for Loyola, particularly the play of 7-foot-1 Teske and the 6-foot-11 Wagner. The Ramblers are 3 for 5 in the paint — a low number, and evidence they’re having trouble creating chances inside.

Michigan 12, Loyola 4 (12:38, 1H): Jon Teske hits a layup to stretch Michigan’s lead to 8. Michigan keeps making stops, and keeps getting baskets. Loyola is 2 for 11 from the floor, and Michigan is capitalizing off transition. Michigan also has 13 rebounds so far, including four by Wagner.

Michigan 6, Loyola 4 (15:55 1H): The Wolverines hit a pair of early 3-pointers from Moritz Wagner and Charles Matthews to take the lead against the Ramblers. Michigan’s defense is strong, early, and not allowing Loyola to create a presence under the net.

Pregame: Ann Arbor is buzzing for Michigan’s first Final Four game since 2013. In San Antonio, the Wolverines are on the court at the Alamodome, ready to tip off against Loyola.

2018 NCAA Tournament: Michigan-Loyola time, game information

Michigan and Loyola-Chicago play at 6:09 p.m. ET on Saturday March 31, 2018.

  • Time: 6:09 p.m. ET.
  • Date: Saturday, March 31, 2018
  • Location: Alamodome, San Antonio
  • TV channel: TBS, which can be found here.

2018 NCAA Tournament: Michigan-Loyola TV channel

The 2018 NCAA Tournament game between Michigan and Loyola-Chicago is on TBS.

2018 NCAA Tournament: Michigan-Loyola how to watch online

You can watch the Michigan-Loyola-Chicago game online with’s March Madness Live.

How can I listen to the Michigan-Loyola-Chicago game on the radio?

The Michigan Sports Marketing Network, headed by flagship stations WWJ (950 AM) in Detroit and WWWW (102.9 FM) in Ann Arbor, will have the call. Matt Shepard provides the play-by-play, and Terry Mills is the analyst. The game also can be heard on Sirius 84, XM 84 and Internet 84.

Michigan-Loyola-Chicago basketball preview

Michigan faces Loyola-Chicago in the first of two national semifinal games Saturday night in San Antonio. It’s the Wolverines’ first appearance in the Final Four since 2013. It’s also the first meeting between the Wolverines and the Ramblers in nearly 40 years.

Michigan (32-7) enters the Final Four on a 13-game winning streak, which dates back to Feb. 11. The Wolverines swept their four Big Ten Tournament games en route to their second consecutive tournament championship. They have handled every sort of situation during their NCAA Tournament run, from Jordan Poole’s game-winning 3-pointer in the final second of a 64-63 win against Houston on March 17, to a 99-72 blowout of Texas A&M in the Sweet Sixteen on March 22.

Charles Matthews led the Wolverines with 17 points in a 58-54 win against Florida State in the Elite Eight on Saturday in Los Angeles. Matthews, a junior guard, has averaged 16.5 points in the Wolverines’ four NCAA Tournament games.

Loyola (32-5) comes out of the South Region as the No. 11 seed. Ben Richardson led the Ramblers with 23 points in a 78-62 win Sunday against Kansas State.

Clayton Custer leads the Ramblers with 13.2 points per game. Donte Ingram averages 6.3 rebounds per game, while Cameron Krutwig averages 6.1 rebounds per game.

The Ramblers are the fourth No. 11 seed to reach the Final Four, joining LSU (1986), George Mason (2006) and VCU (2011).

Loyola enters the Final Four as the winner of 14 consecutive games — the nation’s longest current winning streak. The Ramblers beat Miami, Tennessee and Kansas State to earn their first trip to the Final Four since 1963. Loyola also looks for its first national championship since 1963, when it beat Cincinnati.

The Wolverines defeated Loyola 84-80 in the second round of the 1964 NCAA Tournament in Minneapolis. Michigan lost to Duke in a national championship semifinal in 1964, the Wolverines’ first appearance in the Final Four. This is the fourth meeting between Michigan and Loyola and the first since 1969, when the Ramblers defeated the Wolverines 112-100 in Chicago.

NCAA Final Four 2018 Results: Opening®National Championship

Michigan and Villanova are the two remaining teams in the 2018 NCAA Tournament after they each won their respective Final Four game on Saturday night. The third-seeded Wolverines are now the hottest team in the country after ending No. 11 Loyola-Chicago’s miraculous run through the bracket, having won 14 straight games dating back to early February. They’ll match up with the top-seeded Wildcats, who just finished making fellow No. 1 Kansas look as pedestrian as the other four opponents they had previously dismantled across the opening two weeks of March Madness.

It’s an intriguing national championship game matchup, but one that may not be a close one if the odds are any indication. Villanova opened between a 6.5- and 7-point favorite, depending on the shop, which is the largest spread on a title contest since Duke was favored by seven against Butler back in 2010. The bookmakers were wrong on that one, however, as Gordon Hayward memorably had a chance to win an improbable championship for the Bulldogs with a half-court heave that was just off the mark. The Wildcats haven’t had any trouble covering the spread so far during the Big Dance, going 5-0 for backers and winning their five contests by an average margin of nearly 18 points. Michigan hasn’t been as dominant during its NCAA Tournament run, but started off the Final Four with a statement victory over the Ramblers, winning by 12 points to easily cover the five-point spread.

Chris Fallica noted that 6.5-point favorites haven’t done that well against the spread in the title game and only marginally better straight up:

Both the Wolverines and Wildcats have been amongst the most profitable teams to bet on during the 2017-18 season. Despite seeing regularly inflated lines, ‘Nova has gone 27-12 against the spread. The program has been favored in all 39 of its matchups so far and has lived up to expectations as the odds-on favorite (5-1 at the start of March Madness) to cut down the nets in San Antonio. Michigan has performed similarly against the spread, compiling a 25-12-2 record this season. The school has covered in eight of its last 10 outings and was a great bet to win it all at 10-1 back on Selection Sunday.

With only one game left to determine a national championship, hoops handicapper Jon Price is back with his final March Madness bracket prediction. The Vegas pro has been imploring readers all month long to take Villanova to win its second title in three years and still feels that the Wildcats aren’t going to lose, but may not like them as much laying seven points. Before getting to his quick pick—an in-depth betting preview of Monday’s game will be coming soon—take a look at the scores from Saturday’s Final Four games, then check out the complete schedule, start time, TV and live streaming info so you can watch online, opening odds and more for the 2018 NCAA Tournament National Championship Game. Then read on for a quick recap of all the Final Four results, highlights and much more.

2018 Final Four Results

Final Four Matchup            Odds Results
No. 3 Michigan vs. No. 11 Loyola-Chicago UM -5.5 UM 69 – LCHI 57
No. 1 Villanova vs. No. 1 Kansas NOVA -5 NOVA 95 – KU 79

2018 NCAA Tournament Championship Game Viewing Info, Odds And Pick

Date Time Matchup (TV) Odds O/U Pick
Monday, April 2 9:20 p.m. No. 3 Michigan vs. TBD (NOVA/KU) NOVA -7 145 NOVA