Villanova beats Michigan to cap NCAA tournament of surprises with a dominant show

SAN ANTONIO — Villanova on Monday night became that occasional college basketball men’s national champion of such uncommon quality that it never did cause its fan base any of the customary bouts of March such as fear, dread or horror. The Villanova fans who streamed from the Alamodome into the bliss of a second national title in three seasons did so with projected life spans pretty much the same as they would have had if they ignored the NCAA tournament and missed their team’s six-game mow through it.

They, of course, had not. They had seen it through from their loud quadrant of the Final Four dome, among other places from here to that city of winners known as Philadelphia, and they had seen it right down to the mastery Villanova showed when it wriggled out of an early little thicket against Michigan and rode its superior skill to a 79-62 win. When the Wildcats sprang out of a 21-14 deficit that stood after nine minutes to lead 37-28 at halftime, they didn’t do so with the kind of dazzling blur they made in routing Kansas on Saturday night. They did it steadily and methodically if compellingly, because in their 36-win season, they reached a rare level of superbness.

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