March 30, 2007
Here are the answers to the Final (Four) Exam:
1. (C) Five. Georgia (last in 2002), Georgia Southern (1992), Georgia State (2001), Georgia Tech (2007) and Mercer (1985) have each participated in the Big Dance.
2. (B) Villanova. The Wildcats were the last team representing a Catholic school to win the national title. The Philly-area school stunned heavily favored Georgetown with a 66-64 upset on Apr. 1, 1985.
3. (D) Bowling Green. Lewis, a Columbus native, played two seasons with the Falcons and averaged 14.6 points before transferring home to finish his career with the Buckeyes.
4. (A) Zero. Incredibly, Durant is the first player in the storied history of the Big 12 (or the Big Eight until its 1996 demise) to win the prestigious honor.
5. (C) Weber State. Howland was twice named the conference's defensive player of the year while playing for the Utah school from 1978 through 1980. Coincidentally, Howland drew his alma mater as a first-round opponent in this year's NCAAs. The Bruins eliminated the Wildcats with a 70-42 victory.
6. (D) Michigan. The Wolverines never achieved this rare double. Three of the four teams that have been ranked No. 1 in both sports during the same week -- Florida, Notre Dame, Ohio State and UCLA -- are playing this weekend.
7. (A) True. This also marks the second Final Four where each participating school is a No. 2 seed or better. The first occurred in 1993: Kentucky, Michigan and North Carolina were No. 1 seeds while Kansas was a No. 2.
8. (D) Lawrence North. Conley, Jr., and Oden, who earned a pair of Gatorade National Player of the Year awards while playing for the Wildcats, enjoyed national exposure while powering the Indianapolis school through the state's prep competition.
9. (C) Maryland. While Arizona's Mike Bibby, Michigan State's Mateen Cleaves and Florida's Corey Brewer participated in the annual event for the nation's elite prep players, the Terrapins did not have a single McDonald's All-American on their roster when the school won its first and only national title in 2002. Standout shooting guard Juan Dixon, who would garner Most Outstanding Player honors for that tournament (surpassing Len Bias as the program's all-time leading scorer in the Sweet 16 victory over Kentucky), was a lightly recruited prospect out of Calvert Hall in nearby Towson.
10. (D) Kentucky and North Carolina (in 1997 and 1998). The Wildcats dropped an overtime heartbreaker to Arizona in the 1997 national championship game but topped Utah for the title in 1998. The Tar Heels suffered a pair of surprising upsets during the national semifinals in both tournaments -- bowing to eventual champ Arizona in '97 and surprising WAC representative Utah in '98.
11. (C) Allen Iverson and Victor Page. Iverson, the fearless combo guard whose program records for points in a single season (926) and career scoring average (23.0 points per game) still stand, became the first player under then-coach John Thompson to leave school early to enter the NBA Draft. The Philadelphia 76ers would select Iverson with the first overall pick in 1996. One year later, backcourt mate Victor Page would follow suit with less fruitful results -- after missing an NBA pre-draft camp due to a night out partying, Page slipped from a potential first-round pick to the ranks of the undrafted. The Sioux Falls Skyforce selected Page with the No. 11 pick of the CBA Draft and the 6-foot-3 guard enjoyed a standout career with the South Dakota club, retiring as the franchise's all-time leading scorer.
12. (B) North Carolina's Michael Jordan in 1982. While His Airness sank Georgetown with the game-winning jumper from 16 feet that everybody remembers, Carolina teammate James Worthy sealed MOP honors after averaging 21.0 points (on 74.0 percent shooting) to go with 4.5 assists and 4.0 rebounds. And that little steal at the end of the title game, of course.
13. (B) Michigan State in 2001. The Spartans followed up their 2000 national championship with their third consecutive Final Four appearance in 2001. The East Lansing school defeated Temple in the South Regional final to advance to the final weekend but fell short against Arizona in the national semifinals.
14. (A) California. The No. 8-seeded Golden Bears stunned top-seeded UCLA, 76-69, in the Pac-10 tournament quarterfinals on Mar. 8. Cal's Ayinde Ubaka logged a career-high 29 points in the upset, which probably cost the Bruins a No. 1 seed in the NCAAs. UCLA is the only Final Four participant which needed an at-large bid to punch its ticket to the dance -- Florida, Georgetown and Ohio State won their conference tourneys to secure their league's automatic bids.
15. (C) Taurean Green. The Florida point guard (and son of former UNLV standout Sidney Green) is averaging 13.3 points. Horford (13.2), Brewer (13.1) and Noah (12.2) are the other most prolific contributors in the team's equal-opportunity offense.
16. (A) Cincinnati. Ohio State (1961 and 1962), Houston (1983 and 1984) and Michigan (1992 and 1993) are the three back-to-back bridesmaids whose company UCLA hopes to avoid.
17. (B) Skip Prosser. The current Wake Forest coach took Loyola (Md.) to the Big Dance in 1994. After departing for the Xavier job during the summer, Prosser led to Musketeers to an NCAA appearance in 1995.
18. (A) 1995. That season's Final Four participants were UCLA (11 titles), North Carolina (four), Oklahoma State (two) and defending champion Arkansas, which claimed its one and only crown in 1994.
19. (C) Murray State. The Racers, who missed the field this season after last year's appearance, have lost 11 consecutive games in the Big Dance.
20. (D) Dean Smith. While Wooden (with UCLA in 1975), McGuire (with Marquette in 1977) and Brown (with Kansas in 1988) retired immediately after leading their schools to championships, Smith's career ended in the national semifinals on March 29, 1997 when fourth-seeded Arizona surprised his top-seeded Tar Heels, a heavily favored group that starred Antawn Jamison, Vince Carter and Shammond Williams.
Final Exam Questions