Miami Wins to Put 3rd Florida Team in Sweet 16; Hold Big Ten to 4 Teams

The 2009 Big East had three No. 1 seeds and put five teams in the Sweet 16, a mark that looked like it would not be threatened until Sunday. After four Big Ten teams had made it, both Minnesota and then Illinois had a shot to match the mark. Minnesota lost by double digits, but Illinois stormed back from a 46-39 deficit to take a 54-52 lead when Brandon Paul pumped twice in the air to avoid a rejection and slammed it home with 3:23 to play. The following is a list of Sweet 16 teams and their seeds from the Big East in 2009 and the Big Ten in 2013:

Big East 2009

Big Ten 2013

Lousville 1

Indiana 1

UConn 1

Ohio St. 2

Pitt 1

Michigan St. 3

Villanova 3

Michigan 4

Syracuse 3

 

The teams battled for another two minutes before Shane Larkin appeared to start to drive, and then stepped back to drain a three-pointer to make it 57-55 Miami.

Illinois caught a tough break on the next trip. DJ Richardson tried to answer with a three-pointer to put Illinois back on top, and when his shot was off the mark a player from both teams reached for the ball. While anyone who has refereed basketball at any level knows how impossible that call is in real-time, the NBA replay rule would have allowed the refs to review the play with only 56 seconds to go and see that the ball was off a Miami player. But the call went the other way, and Miami was able to hit all their free throws down the stretch to hold onto a 63-59 win.

The win gives the state of Florida three teams in the Sweet 16 with Florida, Miami and the first 15-seed ever to make the Sweet 16: Florida Gulf Coast.

Rion Brown scored 21 points and had five rebounds as the Illinois defense keyed on Larkin. Nnanna Egwu had 12 points and 12 rebounds for Illinois.

 


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