Baylor Bulldozes Gonzaga, Win First Men’s National Championship 86-70

Baylor jumped out to a 9-0 lead, and they were never really challenged the rest of the way. The Bears hammered the Bulldogs all night to win their first NCAA Men’s Basketball National Championship in program history.

Gonzaga got the game within seven once (11-4) and only got within nine once in the second half (58-49). Otherwise, it was all Baylor.

Our own John Canzano put it perfectly. This isn’t about Gonzaga losing it, Baylor took it.

Early on, Baylor hit three’s like they were shooting in the layup line. The Bears started 5-for-5 before coming back to Earth and only hitting one of their next five three’s.

However, they ended up with 10 made three pointers, so 30 points off three’s alone. Gonzaga shot 5-of-17 from three on the night, so 15 fewer points just on three’s.

Jared Butler, the game’s Most Outstanding Player, led the Bears in scoring with 22 points, and he had seven assists. He became the first player with 20-plus points and seven or more assists in a National Championship Game since Carmelo Anthony in 2003. Melo had 20 points, seven assists and 10 rebounds.

The Bears (28-2) also got solid scoring from Macio Teague (19 points) and Davion Mitchell (15 points).

On the other side, Gonzaga (31-1) just couldn’t dig themselves out of the massive hole.

Jalen Suggs tried to will the Zags back into the game, but even his 22 points were not enough. Drew Timme and Corey Kispert each scored 12 for the Bulldogs as well.

The Indiana Hoosiers of 1976 remain the last men’s basketball team to finish a season undefeated.

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