Villanova’s Wright earns coach of decade honors
The final seconds of the 2016 national title game were some of the most dramatic in college basketball history.
North Carolina’s Marcus Paige hit an off-balance 3-pointer to tie the game with 4.7 seconds left, only to be upstaged by Villanova’s Kris Jenkins hitting a buzzerbeating, game-winning 3-pointer.
Amid all the drama, Villanova coach Jay Wright remained calm. When Jenkins let go of his shot, Wright nonchalantly said “Bang,” then walked over to shake Tar Heels coach Roy Williams’ hand as if the Wildcats had just won an exhibition game, not a national championship.
Smooth as one of his designer suits, Wright turned Villanova into a national powerhouse during the 2010s, leading the Wildcats to two national titles while changing the way college basketball is played.
Wright’s success on the outskirts of Philadelphia made him a runaway choice as men’s coach of the decade. He received 16 of 24 votes from a panel of Associated Press poll voters, well ahead of Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski with five votes. Gonzaga’s Mark Few, Kentucky’s John Calipari and Virginia’s Tony Bennett had one each.
“Jay Wright’s resume speaks for itself with two national titles in the 2010s,” ESPN analyst and AP voter Dick Vitale said. “He has developed a consistent winner and has enjoyed success on and off the court. He has a special winner’s mentality.”
Badgers upset Buckeyes: Nate Reuvers scored 17 points, and Wisconsin rallied late to upset No. 5 Ohio State 61-57 on Friday night in Columbus, Ohio.
Reuvers’ jumper gave the Badgers (9-6, 2-1 Big Ten) a 52-51 lead with 1:54 left, and late free throws from Reuvers and D’Mitrik Trice sealed the win.
Ohio State (11-3, 1-2) lost a second straight game. The Buckeyes got a terrific performance from Kaleb Wesson, who had 22 points and 13 boards. But Wesson missed a 3 at the 2-minute mark that likely would have kept the Buckeyes in the game.
Layups: UTEP coach Rodney Terry was discharged from a Miami hospital, where he spent two days being treated for anaphylactic shock. The school said Terry’s medical condition was caused by a reaction to something he ate. Terry won’t coach the Miners in their game Saturday at Florida Atlantic but is expected to resume his duties Thursday at home against Southern Mississippi . ... UNC freshman G Anthony Harris will undergo seasonending surgery next week for a torn ACL. He averaged 6.8 points in five games this season . ... Rutgers junior G Geo Baker is out indefinitely with a left thumb injury. Baker leads the Scarlet Knights in minutes (30.5), assists (4.0) and steals (1.8) and is second in scoring with 11.5 points per game.
Coach Jay Wright guided Villanova to a pair of national titles during the 2010s.