Photo Courtesy: USA Today

Villanova, Michigan face off in highly anticipated title game

April 02, 2018 - 4:47 pm
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By Joe Schiller

The 2018 NCAA tournament has been nothing short of spectacular. From the first tip-off, fans have been provided with a wealth of entertainment that included UMBC’s historic win along with Sister Jean and Loyola-Chicago’s incredible run to the Final Four.

But as it always seems to do, the tournament has weeded out the cinderellas, leaving tonight’s championship game to be decided between No. 1 Villanova and No. 3 Michigan.

Two of college basketball’s top teams throughout the entire season face off at the Alamodome in what’s expected to be a must-watch matchup.

The Wildcats come in as heavy favorites but Michigan aren’t a team to be overlooked. The Big 10 champions ride a 14-game win streak and are one of the hottest teams in the country. Led by the towering presence that is Mo Wagner, the power forward has carried Michigan into the championship game, averaging 14.8 points and and 7.4 rebounds from the floor.

Of course, a little bit of luck and a game-winning three-pointer from Jordan Poole in the second round against Houston were just as crucial. It’s the Wolverines' first championship appearance since 2013 and John Beilein is looking to end the title drought that’s coming up on 30 years.

Villanova will have something to say about those chances. The Big East champions have bullied their way through the tournament, winning every game by at least double digits. Jay Wright’s team is playing their best basketball of recent, which was evident in a 95-79 rout over Kansas in the Final Four, where the Wildcats set a tournament record with 18 three-pointers.

Jalen Brunson has played like the nation’s top point guard, leading the Wildcats with 17.6 points and 4.4 assists per game. A roster led heavily by upperclassman have defied the one-and-done notion that’s become so popular in the college basketball landscape.

If tonight’s game shows any glimpses of Villanova’s incredible title-winning game over North Carolina in 2016, then we’re set for a treat.

In a battle of two big-time programs, this is a game you won't want to miss.