There will be a new men’s NCAA basketball national champion in 2022.
Defending Champion No. 1 Baylor became the first top seed to lose at this year’s tournament, as the Bears lost to 8th seed North Carolina 93-86 in extra time in Saturday’s second round.
It was a monumental win for the Tar Heels in Year 1 under Hubert Davis, but it wasn’t easy and certainly not without controversy.
North Carolina built a huge lead in this game on the back of a hot shot from guard R.J. Davis and forward Brady Manek, who scored 30 and 26 points respectively. According to ESPN, Davis became only the second player in the school’s history to have 30 points in the game against the No. 1 in the NCAA tournament since seeding began in 1979. The only other Tar Heel to achieve that feat was Al Wood in the Final Four against Virginia in 1981.
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Baylor had no answers for Davis and Manek for the majority of the game, trailing by as much as 25 points from 8th seed Tar Heels. However, with 10:08 remaining in the second half, the game turned around.
Manek struggled to rebound under the basket and had his elbow clip the Bears’ forward Jeremy Sochan. After reviewing the video, officials charged Manek with blatant offense 2, removing him from the contest.
That’s when Baylor ran.
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Carolina had plenty of trouble breaking the Bears’ full-court pressure defense, and had plenty of 50-50 calls against her in the final 10 minutes of play.
In addition, the Tar Heels were without their second top scorer in the game at Manek, and keeper combo Caleb Love, who was fouled shortly after Manek’s dismissal.
A combination of problems for North Carolina led to a historic collapse, as Baylor might strike back in a game that looked good in hand.
After scoring just 42 points in the first 30 minutes of regulation, Baylor closed with 38 points in the final 10 minutes to equalize to 80 and send it into extra time.
But in the extra frame, Tar Heels used a well-timed defense and rebound to choke Baylor and beat the Bears 13–6 in extra time to avoid an epic collapse in this unexpected thriller.
North Carolina will now play in Sweet 16 on Thursday and await the winner of the battle between No. 5 Saint Mary’s and No. 4 UCLA.