Matt Jones is the online sports director for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A double graduate of the University of Arkansas, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, and voter for the Heisman Trophy.
Looking back at 16 memorable finishes for Arkansas in the NCAA Tournament
Duke's Grant Hill, left, and Cherokee Parks, right, try to contain Arkansas' Corliss Williamson during the first half of the NCAA championship game in Charlotte, N.C., Monday, April 4, 1994. (AP Photo/David Longstreath)
On what was supposed to be the first day of the Sweet 16, we decided to take a look back at 16 of Arkansas' most exciting NCAA Tournament games.
Most of the games occurred during the Razorbacks' glory years, when coaches Eddie Sutton and Nolan Richardson took the team to 22 tournaments between 1977 and 2001. Arkansas had a 36-21 record in the tournament and played in the Final Four four times during that span.
Seven of the games on the list included a game winner in the final five seconds, while most others included a go-ahead shot in the game's final minute. Arkansas was 11-5 in the games chosen.
Thanks to Bob Holt of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for his contribution to the list, as well as HogStats.com and WarMachine2013 on YouTube for their archived materials that were helpful in research of the games.
Arkansas 79, Oregon 76 — March 23, 1945 — Kansas City, Mo.
The Razorbacks’ Bill Flynt made a free throw and a basket in the final 14 seconds to give Arkansas the win after the game was tied at 76-76.
The victory sent Arkansas to the Final Four a year after an automobile accident kept the team from playing in the NCAA Tournament when it had qualified.
Arkansas and Oregon combined for 155 points - a tournament record at the time by 36 points - and were tied three times in the final four minutes. The Razorbacks led by as many as 14 points in the first half and by 13 at halftime.
Oklahoma State beat Arkansas 68-41 the following night en route to its first of two straight national championships.
The Razorbacks played in the Final Four for the second time in the tournament’s seven seasons, but the 1944 accident might have kept Arkansas from a third trip. A university instructor was killed and two players were critically injured after they were pinned between their station wagon and another vehicle while stopped to change a tire along U.S. 71 during a nighttime rainstorm. Sleet and snow had fallen in the area earlier in the day.
The first-team players from the Razorbacks’ Southwest Conference champion were returning to Fayetteville in the station wagon after playing an exhibition game in Fort Smith to prepare for the NCAA Tournament. Deno Nichols, an All-Southwest Conference guard, had a leg amputated and Ben Jones suffered two broken legs in the accident that killed UA instructor Everett Norris.
Jones was a non-playing team captain in 1945.
Arkansas 74, UCLA 70 - March 16, 1978 — Albuquerque, N.M.
This was the game that put Arkansas basketball on the national map. UCLA entered with a 25-2 record, and its only losses had come to Notre Dame, a Final Four participant that year.
Although the Bruins were removed from the dominance of the John Wooden years, they were still a tournament behemoth, winners of 50 of their previous 53 postseason games.
“When you consider that from about age seven to 17, UCLA was the national champion all but about one year, there was a bit of awe,” Arkansas senior Jim Counce admitted after the game.
But the Razorbacks didn’t seem awestruck as they built a 16-point first half lead behind 18 points from Marvin Delph.
UCLA rallied to take a 60-58 lead in the second half, but the Razorbacks’ ensuing 6-0 run gave them the lead for good.
Delph scored 23 points to lead Arkansas and Sidney Moncrief added 21. The Razorbacks made 18 of 28 free throws, compared to 2-of-8 for the Bruins.
Counce was praised after the game for holding UCLA great David Greenwood to his season average of 17 points, and to five rebounds, eight below his average.
The UCLA victory propelled Arkansas to the regional final against Cal State Fullerton two days later, which the Razorbacks won 61-58 to advance to the Final Four.
Arkansas 71, Notre Dame 69 — March 27, 1978 — St. Louis
Arkansas’ first Final Four win came 16 years before it ever played in the national championship game.
Ron Brewer hit a jumper as time expired to break a tie with Notre Dame in the consolation game of the Final Four. Brewer’s straightaway, turnaround jumper was from about 17 feet and over the outstretched arm of 6-7 Bill Hanzlik.
The Razorbacks led 67-61 with 1:35 to play, but Notre Dame tied the game at 69-69 on Tracy Jackson’s jumper with 14 seconds remaining.
A timeout with 10 seconds left set up Brewer’s game winner. Brewer inbounded the ball to Marvin Delph, and Delph handed it back to Brewer, who had made multiple last-second shots prior to the one against the Fighting Irish.
Brewer, playing in his final college game, scored 20 points while playing all 40 minutes. Delph, a fellow senior, led the Razorbacks with 21.
It was one of the final consolation games in the history of the NCAA, which did away with the game three years later. Arkansas had lost to Kentucky 64-59 and Notre Dame lost 90-86 to Duke two days earlier.
The win over Notre Dame was Arkansas’ 32nd that year, which at the time tied the single-season NCAA wins record. The 32 victories are tied for most ever by a Razorback team.
Indiana State 73, Arkansas 71 — March 17, 1979 — Cincinnati
The game featured hall of famers Larry Bird and Sidney Moncrief, but it was Indiana State’s Bob Heaton who had the game’s most memorable play, a left-handed push from in front of the rim to give the Sycamores a two-point win and berth in the Final Four.
Heaton, who is right handed, switched to his left hand for an off-balanced shot put. It was his second buzzer beater that year. He had a 50-footer to send a game against New Mexico State to overtime, preserving Indiana State’s perfect record.
The Sycamores improved to 32-0 with their win over the Razorbacks.
In Arkansas the game might be remembered more for a no-call with 1:02 remaining that resulted in a traveling violation on U.S. Reed, giving the Sycamores the ball for the final shot. Reed’s leg tripped over the leg of Carl Nicks, and Reed was called for traveling when he stood up with the basketball.
Reed’s basket with 1:45 left gave Arkansas a 71-69 lead, but Bird tied the game with two free throws on the ensuing possession. Bird had also tied the game a minute earlier with a basket to match Moncrief’s that had put the Razorbacks ahead 69-67 with less than three minutes to play.
Bird touched the ball three times on the Sycamores’ final possession, but was guarded tightly by Moncrief, foreshadowing their battles in the NBA over the next decade.
Bird finished with 31 points and 10 rebounds, and Moncrief scored 24 in his final game with the Razorbacks.
Arkansas 74, Louisville 73 — March 14, 1981 — Austin, Texas
Louisville was the reigning national champion and led 73-72 before U.S. Reed delivered one of the defining moments of March Madness.
As NBC cut away from another game to show the ending in real time to a national audience, Reed took an inbounds pass from Darrell Walker on the baseline, dribbled seven times and heaved a prayer a step past the half-court stripe that hit the back of the rim and dropped through to give Arkansas its most improbable win.
On the NBC broadcast, the great basketball announcer Marv Albert declared, “It’s in! It’s in! U.S. Reed!…It’s all over!” NBC cameras showed Arkansas players celebrating and Louisville cheerleaders in tears.
Through the years the shot has been credited as the moment the NCAA Tournament became one of the biggest whales in live TV for its exciting finishes.
"I ran into a guy who said he jumped up and hit his head on a light socket and cut a hole in his head and had to be rushed to the hospital," Reed told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette in 2006 on the 25-year anniversary of his shot. "Another guy said he had a heart attack and had to be rushed to the hospital.
"I started thinking, 'Man, I almost killed some people.'"
Reed killed Louisville’s chance at a repeat championship. The Cardinals entered the tournament with wins in 19 of their previous 20 games, and had a first-round bye while Arkansas had to defeat Mercer to advance to the second-round matchup.
It looked like Louisville might be the one with a memorable finish when Derek Smith put back a missed shot in traffic with five seconds remaining to give the Cardinals a one-point lead. In the subsequent timeout Arkansas coach Eddie Sutton told Reed, who had a 20-foot game winner to beat Texas and a free throw with no time left to beat Texas A&M a year earlier, he would be the one shoot the ball.
His shot to beat Louisville was from 49 feet, but was worth only two points. The NCAA didn’t establish the 3-point shot until six years later.
Reed scored 19 points in 40 minutes against the Cardinals. Walker led Arkansas with 23 while also playing the entire game.
Louisville 65, Arkansas 63 — March 24, 1983 — Knoxville, Tenn.
Louisville’s Shooter McCray was on the floor when U.S. Reed hit his miracle shot in Austin. Standing at the free throw line, McCray’s shoulders slumped as the Razorbacks celebrated.
Two years later on another orange-stained floor in Knoxville, it was McCray who got to celebrate after a last-second shot.
McCray was credited with a tip in to give the Cardinals a two-point win over the Razorbacks in Sweet 16. There was a second on the clock when McCray’s shot went through the net, but during an era when the clock didn’t stop on a made basket, Arkansas had no chance to inbound the ball.
It wasn’t clear whether McCray or Charles Jones made the game winner, but the official scorer credited McCray with the basket.
It came on a wild sequence under the rim that saw the Cardinals get five shots off in the final seven seconds. The Razorbacks had a 31-20 edge in rebounds before the flurry of second-chance opportunities.
Louisville’s winning shot came after a controversial traveling call on Arkansas’ Charles Balentine, who fell to the floor when he tripped on the leg of the Cardinals’ Milt Wagner with 37 seconds remaining. It was the final of 22 turnovers committed by the Razorbacks.
With the win, Louisville advanced to play its rival Kentucky in the Elite Eight. The Cardinals won that game to advance to their third Final Four in four seasons - the exception when they lost to Arkansas two years earlier.
Virginia 53, Arkansas 51 (OT) — March 18, 1984 — East Rutherford, N.J.
The teams had scored just two points apiece when Rick Carlisle - the future NBA coach - retrieved a blocked shot and hit a baseline jumper with four seconds remaining to give the Cavaliers an upset win in their first year after Ralph Sampson’s departure for the NBA.
Virginia’s Othwell Wilson made the front end of two free throws to tie the game 49-49 with 15 seconds remaining in regulation, and Arkansas’ Alvin Robertson missed a shot at the buzzer.
Wilson’s game-tying free throw was set up after the Razorbacks’ Ricky Norton was called for charging with 48 seconds left, giving the ball back to the Cavaliers. After the game, Arkansas coach Eddie Sutton said he didn’t think Virginia’s Ricky Stokes had his feet set when he collided with Norton.
“I just spoke to a member of the (NCAA) Committee,” Sutton said in his postgame remarks. “I said that may be the thing that drives me to the NBA, collegiate officiating.”
Robertson blocked Wilson’s shot in the closing seconds of overtime, but the ball went into the hands of Carlisle for the game winner.
It was a gut-wrenching loss for Arkansas, which had high hopes after going 24-5 and winning the Southwest Conference in the regular season. The Razorbacks were a No. 2 seed in their region and had a first-round bye, while Virginia advanced with a one-point win over Iona in the first round.
It was the final college game for Robertson, the All-America guard who scored 14 points and - along with Arkansas center Joe Kleine, who scored 15 - played all 45 minutes.
Arkansas 86, Dayton 84 — March 17, 1990 — Austin, Texas
Todd Day followed his own miss and his putback with four seconds remaining capped an entertaining opening weekend of games in Austin.
Dayton upset Illinois - a Final Four team a year earlier - in the first round, and Arkansas survived a clash of styles with a four-point win over Princeton in the first round. And on the opposite side of the bracket, eighth-seeded North Carolina upset the region's top seed, Oklahoma, in the second round.
Day scored a game-high 25 points and Lenzie Howell added 23 in the win over Dayton. Arkansas led by as many as 12 points in the second half and was ahead 81-74 before the Flyers went on a 7-0 run to tie it.
Day’s 3-pointer with 2:16 left put the Razorbacks ahead 84-81, but the Flyers tied it again on Negele Knight’s 3-pointer with 35 seconds remaining. Arkansas worked the shot clock down on its final possession, resulting in Day’s game winner. Dayton failed to get a shot off after taking a timeout.
The Flyers had won 14 in a row.
Arkansas 88, Texas 85 — March 24, 1990 — Dallas
Reunion Arena officials had hoped for a clash of Arkansas and Oklahoma in the Sweet 16, but that was dashed by the Sooners’ upset loss to North Carolina a week earlier.
Few envisioned an even more appealing matchup between the Southwest Conference’s two best teams in the heart of SWC country. But that was the case when the Razorbacks met 10th-seeded Texas in the Elite Eight.
Arkansas won despite an uncharacteristically-bad performance from 3-point range (1-for-11) and struggling at the line (23-for-38).
But the Razorbacks made up for the off nights elsewhere with a 31-for-58 performance inside the arc. Lenzie Howell led Arkansas with 21 points.
It was the Razorbacks’ third win over Texas that season and came seven weeks after Nolan Richardson walked off the floor to protest officiating during a game in Austin, only to be brought back out for overtime after Lee Mayberry hit a game-tying 3-pointer at the end of regulation.
The win gave Richardson the first of three Final Four appearances. Arkansas didn’t beat a team seeded higher than eighth (North Carolina) in its region.
Memphis 82, Arkansas 80 — March 21, 1992 — Milwaukee, Wis.
David Vaughn rebounded his own miss and scored with eight seconds remaining to give Memphis the go-ahead points in its second-round victory over Arkansas - a game the Razorbacks led by as many as 13 points before halftime.
Vaughn’s shot and Lee Mayberry’s miss on a 3-pointer at the buzzer ended the MayDay years at Arkansas, when classmates Mayberry, Todd Day and Oliver Miller combined to win 115 games, including nine in the NCAA Tournament, and four conference championships in two leagues.
Arkansas, the No. 3 seed, was favored to beat Memphis even though the Tigers had won 92-88 at The Pyramid in Memphis earlier that year.
It appeared the Razorbacks might run away with their meeting in the tournament when Day scored 13 points in the game’s first five minutes. But the Memphis native struggled with foul trouble the rest of the game and finished with 14 points.
Mayberry also struggled with an 8-point performance on 3-of-13 shooting, including misses on all six of his 3-point attempts.
Vaughn scored 26 points and Penny Hardaway added 14 to lead the Tigers, who advanced to the Elite Eight.
Ironically, Mayberry and Day played their final college game at their future NBA home, Milwaukee's Bradley Center. The Bucks drafted both players that year.
Arkansas 76, Michigan 68 — March 27, 1994 — Dallas
Minus Chris Webber, the remainder of Michigan’s Fab Five was intact and a win shy of a third consecutive Final Four, playing against a roster of Razorbacks who had never been that far in the tournament.
President Bill Clinton and his family were also on hand to cheer on Arkansas.
The Razorbacks led by nine points at halftime and had a comfortable lead for much of the second half, but behind a strong effort from Juwan Howard, Michigan pulled within two with 5:30 remaining. Howard scored 30 points and recorded 13 rebounds.
Arkansas answered with a 6-2 run that included good inside play from Corliss Williamson and Darnell Robinson, who finished with 12 and 14 points, respectively. Scotty Thurman scored 20 points to lead the Razorbacks.
Michigan pulled within 71-68 on Jalen Rose’s 3-pointer with 1:04 to play, but the Wolverines didn’t score again.
It was Arkansas’ 13th consecutive victory at Reunion Arena, and the final game the Razorbacks ever played at the venue once nicknamed “Barnhill South” by fans.
Arkansas 76, Duke 72 — April 4, 1994 — Charlotte, N.C.
The Razorbacks were playing in their first national championship game against a program in the title game for the fourth time in five years. To make Duke feel more at home, the game was in the same state as its campus.
Arkansas led 34-33 at halftime after a back-and-forth first half, but the Blue Devils opened the second half on a 15-4 run to go ahead by 10 points with 17 minutes remaining.
The Razorbacks responded with their own 16-4 run to regain the lead on Clint McDaniel's steal and layup with just more than 11 minutes to play, and the teams went back and forth from there.
Grant Hill tied the game 70-70 on a 3-pointer with 1:29 to play, but Scotty Thurman's 3-pointer as the shot clock expired on the opposite end gave the Razorbacks the lead for good. Thurman's high-arching shot was over the outstretched arm of Antonio Lang and went through with 50.7 seconds remaining.
Corliss Williamson scored 23 points to lead the Razorbacks and earn most valuable player. Thurman and Corey scored 15 apiece.
In his final game at Duke, Hill was held to 12 points on 4-of-11 shooting.
The win gave Arkansas its first national championship. In their third year in the SEC, the Razorbacks became the league's first champion since Kentucky 16 years earlier.
Arkansas 96, Syracuse 94 (OT) — March 19, 1995 — Austin, Texas
A Syracuse mistake let Arkansas off the hook. With the Orange ahead 82-81, Lawrence Moten, a senior guard who earlier that year broke the Big East’s career scoring record, called for a timeout after Syracuse’s Lucius Jackson stole an Arkansas inbounds pass with 4.3 seconds remaining.
The Orange were out of timeouts, though, resulting in a technical foul.
Two years earlier, Michigan’s Chris Webber had made the same mistake in a much bigger moment, the final seconds of the national championship game against North Carolina. But while Michigan was trailing at the time of Webber’s mistake, Moten’s allowed Arkansas to tie the game when the Razorbacks were on the brink of elimination.
Scotty Thurman made the back end of two technical free throws to tie the game, and Alex Dillard missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer to send the game to overtime. The Razorbacks played the extra period without two of its starters, Corliss Williamson and Clint McDaniel, who fouled out in the closing minutes of regulation. A third starter, Dwight Stewart, fouled out in the first minute of overtime.
But Thurman and reserves Dillard and Lee Wilson led the Razorbacks back from five Syracuse leads in overtime. Wilson made a pair of free throws, Dillard hit a 3-pointer, and Thurman scored Arkansas’ final six points, including a 17-foot jumper that touched every corner of the rim before dropping through with 1:07 to play to put the Razorbacks ahead for good.
Thurman made a free throw with 12.6 seconds left to give Arkansas a two-point lead, and Syracuse missed two 3-point attempts in the final seconds.
Thurman scored 27 points to lead Arkansas and Williamson scored 25 before fouling out. Wilson had 18.
The victory was the Razorbacks’ second close call on the opening weekend of the tournament. Texas Southern, a 15 seed, had the ball with a chance to win at the end of the first-round game two days earlier when Arkansas won by a point.
"You can't do anything but look upstairs," Williamson said after defeating Syracuse, "and tell the good Lord, ‘Thank you.’”
Arkansas 96, Memphis 91 (OT) — March 24, 1995 — Kansas City, Mo.
The Razorbacks survived a scare from Memphis for the second time in six weeks.
A month after Arkansas defeated the Tigers 88-87 at Bud Walton Arena, Memphis led by 12 points with less than 7:30 to play in regulation of their Sweet 16 game at Kemper Arena. At times it felt like a road game for Arkansas as Kansas fans - awaiting their own regional semifinal against Virginia - cheered on the underdog Memphis team.
The Razorbacks closed regulation on a 16-4 run that included six points in 57 seconds by Corliss Williamson, who finished with 27 points, and two 3-pointers by Scotty Thurman. Corey Beck made the first of two free throws with 11.5 seconds remaining to tie the game at 83-83.
Arkansas opened overtime on a 9-2 run to put the game away. It was the Razorbacks’ fourth consecutive win over the Tigers, and third by five points or less.
"This is a bitter pill for me to swallow," Memphis coach Larry Finch said after the game. "I'd rather lose by 20 than lose another close game to Arkansas."
Arkansas 75, North Carolina 68 — April 1, 1995 — Seattle
In a matchup of the two most recent national champions, Arkansas denied the ACC a team in the championship game for the first time in the 1990s.
Corliss Williamson scored 19 of his 21 points after halftime and Arkansas led 69-58 before a 9-0 UNC run tightened things in the closing minutes. Clint McDaniel made four free throws in the final 27.5 seconds to seal the win for the Razorbacks.
The Tar Heels appeared to be taking at least a seven-point lead to halftime, but an errant pass on an inbounds pass led to a wild sequence that gave Arkansas momentum going into the locker room. The pass that was intended for UNC’s Rasheed Wallace went off the backboard and was rebounded by the Razorbacks’ Davor Rimac, who passed to Dwight Stewart for a 55-foot heave that was good at the buzzer to trim UNC's lead to four.
After briefly building their lead early in the second half, the Tar Heels went cold, going nearly 13 minutes without a made basket. UNC was 6-for-24 from the floor after halftime.
It was the third meeting in six seasons between the Razorbacks and Tar Heels in the NCAA Tournament, with Arkansas winning twice.
The 1995 win over North Carolina was Arkansas’ 11th straight in the NCAA Tournament, a run that included wins over teams coached by John Thompson, Tubby Smith, Steve Fisher, Lute Olson, Mike Krzyzewski, Jim Boeheim and Dean Smith - all national championship winners.
Georgetown 63, Arkansas 61 — March 15, 2001 — Boise, Idaho
Nathaniel Burton’s layup at the buzzer gave Georgetown the win in Nolan Richardson’s final NCAA Tournament game.
Burton wasn’t sure if he got his shot off in time, and the play was reviewed by officials who determined the basket counted.
Arkansas had tied the game on Joe Johnson’s basket with 35.8 seconds remaining. Johnson scored a game-high 14 points in his final game before turning pro.
The Razorbacks never regained possession after Johnson’s game-tying shot. The Hoyas ran down the clock, with Burton’s layup over Brandon Dean barely beating the shot clock, in addition to the game clock.
Arkansas led by as many as seven points in the second half, which was delayed several minutes after an electrical malfunction. Officials used handheld aerosol horns for a time in the second half, but the horn had been repaired by the time of Burton’s game winner.
It was the first true buzzer beater in an Arkansas tournament game since U.S. Reed’s half-court shot downed Louisville 20 years earlier.
Richardson, who was fired as the Razorbacks’ coach 11 months later, finished his Arkansas tenure with a 26-12 record in NCAA Tournament games, but lost his final three.
Other Notable Games
• Cincinnati’s Oscar Robertson scored 56 points in the Bearcats’ 97-62 win over the Razorbacks in 1958.
• Cal State Fullerton rallied from down 15 at halftime to take a lead late in the second half, but Ron Brewer and Jim Counce had late baskets to give the Razorbacks a 61-58 win over Cal State Fullerton in the 1978 Elite Eight in Albuquerque. Arkansas became the first Southwest Conference team to advance to the Final Four in 22 years.
• Scott Hastings missed a 25-foot shot at the buzzer and Arkansas was upset 65-64 by Kansas State in the second round of the 1982 tournament in Dallas.
• Chris Mullin scored 26 points to lead St. John’s to a 68-65 victory over the Razorbacks in the second round of the 1985 tournament in Salt Lake City. It was Eddie Sutton’s final game as Arkansas’ head coach.
• Arkansas defeated Loyola-Marymount 120-101 in the first round of the 1989 tournament in Indianapolis. It was the first tournament win at Arkansas by Nolan Richardson. It is also the fourth-highest scoring game in the history of the tournament, and was second highest at the time.
• Arkansas defeated Murray State in the first round of the 1992 tournament in Milwaukee. The Racers were coached by Scott Edgar, who was in his first season after being hired away from Nolan Richardson’s coaching staff. Edgar had been a Richardson assistant for 11 seasons.
• Donald Williams got free on a back-door cut and laid up over Corliss Williamson to give North Carolina a 77-74 lead inside of 30 seconds, and the Tar Heels held off a hard-fought effort by the Razorbacks to win 80-74 in the 1993 Sweet 16. UNC went on to win the national championship that year and the nucleus of Arkansas’ team returned the following year to win its first national title.
• Arkansas defeated Arizona 91-82 in the 1994 national semifinal in Charlotte. The Razorbacks led by double digits in the first half before Arizona tied it at halftime on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Damon Stoudemire. The Wildcats played with the lead for much of the second half, but a Dwight Stewart 3-pointer and Corliss Williamson steal and slam around the 7-minute mark turned the tide and sparked an Arkansas run to put the game away. It was the Razorbacks’ second Final Four win, but first in a semifinal game.
• Texas Southern missed a free throw that would have tied the game with 6.1 seconds remaining, then failed to get a shot off following an Arkansas miss at the line moments later, and the Razorbacks held on for a 79-78 win in the first round of the 1995 tournament in Austin.
• UCLA won 89-78 over a flat Arkansas team in the 1995 championship game in Seattle. Ed O’Bannon scored 31 points to lead the Bruins and freshman Toby Bailey surprised with a 26-point effort. Arkansas senior guard Clint McDaniel missed much of the game with an injury.
• In its first tournament game in five years, Arkansas was upset 59-55 by Bucknell in a first-round game in Dallas.
• Arkansas overcame a 19-point deficit in the first half to take the lead, but North Carolina - aided by a couple of favorable calls in the closing minutes - finished on a 12-0 run to win 72-65 in the 2017 second round in Greenville, S.C. The Tar Heels went on to win the national championship.
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