Tuesday, March 31, 1981
The Michigan Daily
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Isiah
Thomas, Indiana's All-American
guard, broke North Carolina's fron-
tcourt barrier and led the Hopsiers to a
63-50 victory over the Tar Heels last
night for the 1981 NCAA basketball
championship, whose texture was en-
tirely changed by the shooting of
When President Reagan was shot
Monday afternoon, it lent a somber note
to this championship, the second for In-
diana cbach Bobby Knight.
AS THE NCAA Division I basketball
committee listened to reports on the
President'scondition, game-time drew
nearer. It was not until the NCAA, the
presidents of both schools involved and
NBC television, which was broad-
casting the event, all were sure that the,
President was out of danger, that the
game was given the go-ahead.
It started only 15 minutes later and it
was preceded by the Rev. Donald
Bolton, who asked the basketball-crazy
to pause one moment to pray for the
safety of the President.
The game began as an anti-climax.
But as it progressed, the tension of a
national title was driven home.
Indiana took its first lead of the game
at the buzzer ending the first half when
Randy Wittman hit a jump shot from
the right corner. That made it 27-26.
And after Knight talked to his players
in the locker room, Thomas, the 6-foot-1
Indiana guard, went to work.
HE SCORED eight points, three on
layups and two after his own steals, as
the Hoosiers outscored North Carolina
12-4 in the opening 4:28 of the second
Indiana led 39-30 with 15:35 to play
and the Hoosiers were on their way to a
fourth national title, the second in
Knight's 10 years at Indiana.
Indiana won the title in 1940, 1953 and
1976, the last under Knight. It capped
off a season in which the Hoosiers had
been all but written off.
AFTER A 7-5 start this season,
Hoosier fans nearly had given up. But
Knight, the consummate coach, would
Good Knight, Heels
not let his players even think of folding.
The Hoosiers wound up winning the Big
Ten conference and came into the final
game of this tournament with a 25-9
record. The nine losses is the most ever
by an NCAA champion.
Early on in this game, it appeared as
though the Hoosiers would be beaten.
North Carolina opened the game by
outscoring the Hoosiers, 8-2. Indiana
did not get a field goal until 5:16 had
elapsed. That basket came on a tip-in
by reserve Steve Risley and started a
run of six straight points that created
the first of four ties in the first half.
INDIANA OUTSCORED North
Carolina 12-4 in a 3:48 stretch that
began midway in the first half and tied
the score 20-20 with 5:14 to go before in-
The two teams battled evenly until
Wittman hit his final-second shot that
gave the Hoosiers a one-point lead at
Thomas scored 23 points for Indiana
and Wittman added 16. Al Wood topped
North Carolina with 18. However,
freshman center Sam Perkins was held
to 11 and James Worthy scored just 12
before he fouled out with 5:07 to play.
THE LOSS MARKED the third time
North Carolina coach Dean Smith has
made it to the title game without win-
ning college basketball's ultimate
Earlier in the week, newsman talked
with Smith about the criticism that he
could win everything but the big one.
"I think this criticism is foolish,"
Smith had said, "but at least if I win it,
maybe I won't have to answer any more
questions about it."
LAST NIGHT, the questions
Smith led North Carolina through a
29-8 season that included the Atlantic
Coast Conference tournament title, but
in his 19 years with the Tar Heels, in his
11 tournament invitations, and in his six
times to the Final Four, he has never
come away better than second.
He finished second in 1977 and 1968.
This year, he can add one more.
For Knight, it was a vindication of
sorts. His team, young and inexperien-
ced, was supposed to have been better
next year. However, the victory was
Indiana's 10th in a row and in the
Hoosiers' past five games, they have
won by margins of 35 over Maryland, 15
over Alabama-Birmingham, 32 over St.
Joseph's (Pa.), 18 over Louisiana State
and 13 over the Tar Heels.
WHEN IT BECAME apparent to
FG FGA FT FTA R
I. Thomas .....
J. Thomas .....
23 48 17 22
FG FGA FT FTA R
Wood..........6B 13 6 9 6'
Worthy ........ 3 11 1 2 6
Perkins .......5 8 1 2 8
Pepper...... 2 5 2 2 I
Black........ 3 4 0 0 2
Budko..........0 1 0 0 1
Doherty ....... 1 2 0 1 4
Braddock... 0 2 0 0 0
Brost.......... 0 0 0 0 0
Kenny..........0 1 0 0 1
Team Rebounds 0
Totals ........\20 47 10 16 29
Indiana 27 36-83
North Carolina 26 24-50.
14 17 63
2 4 18
2 5 7
1 3 11
0 0 0
0 4 2
0 0 0
12 23 50
INDIANA'S LANDON TURNER (32), hangs onto rim while dunking ball at
the NCAA championship in Philadelphia last night. In on the play is James
Worthy (left). A technical foul was called on the play, but it didn't prove
significant as the Hoosiers whipped the Tar Heels, 63-50. .
Knight that a conventional lineup would
be too slow to handle the Tar Heels, he
removed Risely, a reserve forward who
had replaced a foul-plagued Ted Kit-
chel, and inserted a third guard.
Knight used that three-guard offense
- Isiah and Jimmy Thomas and Wit-
tman - most of the evening, relying on
Ray Tolbert and Landon Turner to
The 6-3 Jim Thomas drew the
assignment on Wood, a 6-6 forward. aim,
no relation to Isiah, hounded 4i nd
beleagured Wood, combining with Isiah
on several important steals and
need a mug
to get resn
Boston 8, Detroit 6
New York (AL) 6. Los Angeles 4
Montreal 8, Kansas City 6
Pittsburgh 9, Minnesota 8
Cincinnati 8, Chicago (AL) 3
Atlanta 4. Houston 3
Philadelphia 15, St. Louis 3
California 4, Cleveland 3
Milwaukee 9, Chicago (NL) 8
San Diego 11, Oakland 5
Baltimore 8, Texas 7
TONIGHT 8 PM
161I CChURCH ST.
March 31 GRAND VALLEY STATE,
at Fisher Stadium
April 1 Eastern Michigan, at Ypsilanti,
April 3 Miami University, at Oxford,;
April 4 Miami University, at Cincinnati,
April 5 Cincinnati, at Cincinnati, l p.m.
April 3 Purdue, at W. Lafayette, 3 p.m.
April 4 Illinois, at Champaign, 1 p.m.
April 5 Notre Dame, at South Bend,'
1 p.m. ,
April 3-4 Ohio State, N. Carolina, at'
April 1 UNIVERSITY OF DETROIT at
April 2 Grand Valley State, at Allendale
April 3 OHIO STATE, at Veterans Par k,
April 4 OhioState Univ. Invit., at
EU # P t AM
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Jeff Lamp rallied Virginia with some clutch foul
shooting and Othell Wilson preserved the victory with his ballhandling as the
Cavaliers downed Louisiana State 78-74 last night in the NCAA basketball tour-
nament's consolation game.
The game began on a somber note when the public address announcer asked th
crowd to observe a moment of silence for President Reagan, shot hours earlier
VIRGINIA LED BY 10 points when the Tigers 'ran off a 17-6 spurt in a 4:15 span
that put them up by one point, 67-66, with 4:36 to play.
Lamp then hit a baseline jumpshot and, when he was fouled by Leonard Mitchell,
made itsa three-point play, giving Virginia a 69-67 lead with 4:04 to play.
Willie Sims was able to convert just one of two foul shots, then Virginia got a pair
of free throws each from Lamp and Lee Raker to lead 73-68 with 2:40 left to play.