The 1982 Game Winner

May 27, 2021

The 1982 NCAA Basketball Championship was played at the Louisiana Superdome between the North Carolina Tar Heels and Georgetown Hoyas.

The Tar Heels won 63-62 on a jumper by Michael Jordan in one of the greatest National Championships ever played.
Both teams featured future Hall of Fame coaches in Dean Smith for the Tar Heels and John Thompson for the Hoyas. The game also featured five future NBA All-Stars in Patrick Ewing and Eric Floyd for the Hoyas, and James Worthy, Sam Perkins, and Michael Jordan for the Tar Heels.
No team ever led by more than a few points throughout the matchup. With just over one minute to go, Floyd put the Hoyas up 62-61. Calling a timeout before their next drive down the court, Tar Heels coach Dean Smith surmised the Hoyas would swarm James Worthy and Sam Perkins and keep them from getting a clear shot. He devised a play call to Michael Jordan and told Jordan to “not be afraid to shoot if he was open.” The Tar Heels worked the ball around the perimeter and found Jordan for an open jumper. The spry freshman drained the bucket for what would be the winning basket of the game.
With 15 seconds remaining, North Carolina had a one point lead, but Georgetown had the ball. On the ensuing possession, Hoya Fred Brown didn’t realize who he was passing the ball to and passed it to James Worthy on the Tar Heels who tried to run out the clock before he was fouled. In double bonus, Worthy missed both free throws and Brown got the ball back for a last second Hail Mary shot. He missed, and the Tar Heels won their second championship, the first since 1957. Worthy was named the Most Outstanding Player of the tournament.

Tagged: College, college basketball, NCAA

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