The Cavaliers won the ACC by four games and stifled the Tar Heels in their lone meeting, a 61-49 Virginia victory on January 6 in Charlottesville. Villanova, Kansas and Xavier joined Virginia as No. 1 seeds, but they, along with the other 64 contenders, will play against the backdrop of an investigation-riddled season in which bribes and payoffs made bigger headlines than 3s and layups.
"This is one of the most connected groups I've ever coached", Virginia coach Tony Bennett said.
Top-seeded Cincinnati (29-4) advances to a championship-game matchup with Houston. "We were thinking back about just how the season ended, just the feeling in the locker room", Elmore said. "Thankful to be the one seed. You just see the teams in your bracket and there are some real quality teams". I don't mind telling you, today, again, he got his club to do what he wanted better than I got what I wanted my club to do.
UVA was named the top seed in the NCAA's South Region on Sunday.
Sixth-seeded Miami (22-9) meets 11-seed Loyola-Chicago (28-5) in Dallas on Thursday, while No. 7 seed Nevada (27-7) meets No. 10 seed Texas (19-14) on Friday in Nashville.
For all of the talk about Virginia's lack of postseason success, they've reached a Sweet 16 and Elite 8 and have advanced past the first game every year in this last four. They have accomplished two-thirds of the goals they set when the season began.
But now the attention turns to UMBC, which defeated Vermont in the America East final on Saturday.
Lyles, a 6-foot-2 guard from DeMatha in Hyattsville, Maryland, originally signed with VCU and later transferred to Robert Morris, where he did not play.
"You gotta play as ideal a game as you can", Maye said of the Cavaliers. So until they do that, they can't win, and that's really hard to do - but they're good enough to do it. "I mean, I really believe that". "Playing here all of the time and then for them to come in and win [was special]".
If by some chance that Virginia does go to Pittsburgh, then Duke and UNC could both play in Charlotte.
"I don't think it's just going to be a little blip on the radar", said John Tauer, the championship-winning coach at Division III St. Thomas in Minnesota, who doubles as a social psychology professor. "And he's been around a lot". Kenny Williams, who did average more than 11 points per game, scored 12 points, but he hasn't always been there when the team needed him.
Louisville and Notre Dame were two ACC teams who ended up on the wrong side of the bubble and did not make the tournament. "I'm happy for these kids, I'm happy for this school", said D'Antoni, the self-proclaimed country boy who wears T-shirts under his jacket while coaching. "Those are heartbreakers. Davidson is a heck of a team, so everyone says, well this team won and steals a bid, this and that".
But that's how the bracket shook out.
Saint Mary's lacked high-quality victories, but it's tough on a West Coast Conference team to get those opportunities. "You guys all did it in college, you try to cram for exams late".
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