SORRY. NO PHOTO TODAY
I was stunned. I actually knew it was going to happen, but I was still stunned. Kris Jenkins hit a three-pointer at the buzzer to win the National Championship against my Heels.
It certainly stings. It was the first buzzer beater to win an NCAA Tournament since NC State did in against Houston in 1983. So, yeah, as a North Carolina fan, three of the most famous buzzer beaters in my life were NC State and Duke hitting them, and UNC getting one hit on them.
I've mentioned this in the past, but I have been pretty lucky when it comes to this. My favorite teams (UNC football/basketball, Redskins, Lakers, Reds) have rarely lost like this. Not just a buzzer beater, but in a title with a winner take all deal. The Tar Heels hoops team had won their last four trips to the title game (1982, 1993, 2005, 2009). The last title loss was in 1981 to Indiana, and I would turn six years old just a few months after that game.
My Redskins would lose Super Bowl XVIII in January 1984 (I was eight and it was rather devastating). They'd win the next two Super Bowls (1988, 1992) and haven't sniffed that success since.
The Lakers have done it. They lost Finals in 1983, 1989, 1991, 2004 and 2008, which sucked, but none of those went to a winner-take-all. Two of those were sweeps and two others went just 5 games. But the Lakers did have 1984 when they lost Game 7 of the Finals to the hated Celtics. They also won Game 7 of the 1988 and 2010 Finals.
So I have been lucky. I haven't seen my team lose in a winner-take-all championship game since 1984 when I was about to be 9 years old. Since that game, I have watched North Carolina, Redskins and Lakers win 7 of these games and those teams win 14 championships.
So it is hard to go out like this. However, I am glad it did happen this way. There has been debates about losing on a buzzer beater and losing in a blowout. Buzzer beater any day. At least my team competed and had a shot to win it.