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UConn Men's Basketball

National Championship Recap: UConn storms past Purdue on its way to history

April 9, 2024

GLENDALE – The UConn Huskies are an inevitable avalanche. They have been most of this season and they kept it up all the way through the national championship game, defeating Purdue 75-60 to become the first repeat national champions since Florida in 2007.

They’re also one of the most dominant champions ever, having only trailed for 4:06 across six NCAA Tournament games as they posted the best cumulative point differential (+140) all-time. They’re just the second team to win all six games by 13 or more points, joining the 2023 UConn Huskies.

Give Purdue credit, the first half was a battle, featuring eight ties and five lead changes as Zach Edey got off to a hot start, scoring the majority of Purdue’s early buckets. The Huskies pulled away late in the first half, taking a six-point lead into the break, and got going early in the second to build it up to double-digits.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

Tristen Newton led the way for the Huskies with 20 points, his second straight year leading the team in scoring in the national championship game, and earned the NCAA’s Most Outstanding Player. He was joined by three other Huskies – Steph Castle, Donovan Clingan, and Cam Spencer – and Edey on the All-Tournament team. Castle scored 15 while the other two added 11 each in Monday evening’s championship effort.

UConn leaned on its identity in the second half. Edey didn’t score until 5:45 into it and the rebounding started tilting in the Huskies’ favor. Their balanced scoring effort caused problems for Purdue all over the court and everyone stepped up to contribute to bring title number six home. Edey finished with 37 points but needed 25 shots to get there, which fell right into the Huskies' game plan, according to Hurley and Newton in the post-game interviews.

Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

The only drama at the end came when Samson Johnson fouled out with 5:38 left and the Huskies ahead, 63-46. Hurley went to the smaller lineup featuring Karaban at the five and they lost four points from their lead before Clingan went back in with 2:44 left.

The Bristol big man quickly knocked down a bucket and then scored the final basket of the game as the Huskies sealed the deal. Andrew Hurley and the reserves entered the game to run down the clock and release the confetti to send UConn into the history books.

Advanced Stats

OReb%: 42.4% (14th-best performance in 40 games)

DReb%: 70% (11th)

Free Throw Rate: 18% (34th)

TO Rate: 13.1% (16th)

Assists/Made baskets: 60% (15th)

eFG%: 53.2% (24th)


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