I am not over the Wisconsin Final Four semifinal loss to
Wisconsin lost because Aaron Harrison hit a 3point shot
with seconds remaining.
I understand that the Harrison shot wasn’t the only
reason the Badgers lost the game. They were sloppy with
the ball in the second half. They were the best in the
country in NOT turning the ball over, yet the Badgers
had a number of unforced mistakes in the final 20
Traevon Jackson missed 1 of 3 free throws in the final
few seconds of the game. Jackson also missed a jump shot
just before the buzzer that would have won the game.
Those events were disappointing, but they were not gut
wrenching. The loss was devastating because of the
No way he was going to make the shot. It wasn’t going
in. It was a stupid shot. It was the wrong thing to do.
When he shot the ball, I was thinking that the Badgers
were going to win the game because he got greedy. He had
made some incredible late-game 3s in the NCAA
Tournament, but lightning doesn’t strike three times in
the same place. Michael Jordan in his prime never did
what Aaron Harrison was trying to do. The play was to
drive the ball to the basket and get the game tying
hoop. Kentucky had been dominating inside, and they
weren’t guaranteed a basket but the odds were in their
Josh Gasser was guarding Harrison perfectly. He was way
behind the 3-point arc. He had not taken a 3-point shot
in the game.
As the shot left his hand, I was thanking, “Aaron
Harrison, thank you. You just put Wisconsin in the
I knew he had hit the game-winner against Michigan from
almost the same spot with just seconds remaining in that
game. In fact, he hit three shots from long range in the
final 4:22 against Michigan. I knew Harrison had also
given Kentucky the lead with a 3point shot with 40
seconds left in their victory over Louisville. It could
be argued that he had shown he was a clutch shooter. I
was emailed by someone who said
he had the clutch gene. Total garbage. No player can
shoot significantly better in such pressure
situations. In most cases, it would be called a
stupid gene. It’s taking shots that are not the best
play for the team.
Aaron Harrison couldn’t do it
again. It would be the greatest clutch shooting in
the history of basketball. He’s not that good. He’s
not even close to that good. He was a 36 percent
3-point shooter for the season. He was 2 for 6 from
long range before the shot against Louisville. He
was 1 for 3 from beyond the arc before hitting the
final 3 against Michigan.
I repeat. I don’t believe
Michael Jordan ever did what Aaron Harrison was
trying to do when he put up the 3-point shot from
way behind the arc with seconds left against
I’ll admit it’s not a given that
Wisconsin was going to win the game if Harrison
missed the shot. Kentucky might have rebounded the
ball and scored to send the game into overtime.
That would have been acceptable.
Harrison took the wrong shot –
and Kentucky won the game.
I’m over it now. I can move on.
I’ll never remember anything
else about the game.
It will always be wrong.
“Wrong” as in Aaron Harrison was
1 for 5 behind the arc in Kentucky’s championship
game loss to UConn. He must have left the clutch
gene at home, because he also missed a 3-point shot
in the final minute.
Steve “The Homer” True writes a regular
column for The Freeman. He can be heard on the “Homer
and Thunder” show from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays on
540ESPN. He can be reached at