Same story, different year.
For the fifth time since 2001, a Big Ten representative finds itself on the losing end of the national championship game.
For college basketball, last night's 82-76 Louisville victory over Michigan was a thriller -- exactly the way the NCAA needed to end the season. But for Big Ten fans, it leaves a bit of a sour taste in our mouths and a feeling of unfinished business.
There's no denying the fact Big Ten basketball reigned as king this season -- at least in my mind. Seven extremely quality teams made the tournament, with Michigan shining the brightest and making a run to the nation's biggest stage in college hoops.
But despite all the successes, the Big Ten desperately needed validation for this season. Yes, it had a representative in the title game, but people put a lot of weight on who actually wins it all -- for better or worse. The Big Ten hasn't won a national championship since 2000, and Big Ten football hasn't even won the crystal football since 2002! The fact it's been over a decade since the Big Ten conference has won in either of the two major college sports is embarrassing.
Regardless, last night turned out to be a heck of a matchup and reminded myself how much I love this game.
Despite Michigan losing Monday night, Tom Dienhart writes how this season is still considered a success for the Big Ten.
A quick wrap-up of last night's championship game.
And the latest from the mess at Rutgers.