5 Takeaways From Duke Defeating Wisconsin For Its 5th National Championship

That was exhilarating, wasn't it?

Duke's 68-63 victory over Wisconsin was everything you could ask for in a national championship. There was drama, action, comedy and suspense all throughout the 40-minute contest in Lucas Oil Stadium as the Blue Devils' freshmen sensations played like wily veterans against a seasoned Badgers squad.

Tyus Jones rescued Duke from the brink with 23 huge points to be named tournament MOP, and Grayson Allen added 16 off the bench to give Duke its fifth national title under head coach Mike Krzyzewski. Frank Kaminsky's 21-point, 12-rebound performance was mostly exceptional, outside of a few late-game blunders. Nigel Hayes contributed with 13 points.

Here's the 5 key takeaways from Duke's triumph over Wisconsin in Indianapolis as college hoops fans prepare for withdrawal until October.

All hail Duke's 'other' freshmen All-Americans

While most of the spotlight went to Duke's star freshmen in center Jahlil Okafor and forward Justise Winslow, the two other freshmen were the catalysts for the second-half surge by the Blue Devils. Tournament MOP Tyus Jones and All-Tournament selection (off of one game) Grayson Allen saved Duke when Okafor's shoddy defense and Winslow's aggressiveness were exposed, thus putting them out the game with foul trouble as Wisconsin had Duke on the ropes. Allen went on a personal 8-0 run to rescue Duke from the brink, and Jones surged Duke into the lead with absurd shots like this.

Jones probably locked himself into a lottery pick this summer, while Allen probably locked himself into "most hated" status for the 2015-16 college hoops season.

Frank got tanked


The Naismith Player of the Year probably deserved better. Kaminsky finished with 21 points and 12 boards, but when the Badgers needed him most, the big man made critical mistakes that Wisconsin couldn't recover from. On two consecutive possessions, Kaminsky kept trying to force a shot against Duke's stifling defense, which resulted in a 25-foot miss off the backboard. Then, Kaminsky lost Okafor for a layup with just two minutes remaining while sitting on four fouls. Kaminsky was the best player on the court Monday night, except for the final three minutes.  

Bo Ryan is salty

We can't blame Bo Ryan for feeling bitter and sour after watching another shaky game by the referees in the biggest game of the college basketball season. However, it's one thing to be frustrated about the guys in the stripes; it's another thing to be frustrated about the freshmen on the opposing team's roster.

This was said right after the game. Rent-A-Player? That's clearly a shot directed at the likes of Arizona, Kentucky and Duke, all teams that regularly field rosters with guys accredited by McDonald's. However, it's not like Ryan's never gotten an All-American (Brian Butch) or a Wisconsin Mr. Basketball (Devin Harris) on his roster. For everyone who gave John Calipari heat for supposedly not giving Notre Dame credit after a close win, Bo Ryan basically did the same thing after a close loss to Duke.

Coach K's absurd legacy

The Duke Blue Devils have won five national titles in Mike Krzyzewski's tenure. Three of those were won in Indianapolis and two in Minneapolis. The fact that Coach K won this game with his best player (Okafor) barely playing half the game (22 minutes) and his second best player (Winslow) shooting an abysmal 3-of-9 from the field is amazing. That seems like a death sentence for any team. Krzyzewski's biggest move was playing Amile Jefferson for extended minutes on Kaminsky in the second half. Jefferson's lateral quickness prevented Kaminsky from driving to the rim and getting easy looks from three, forcing Kaminsky to post up instead. Throw in the fact that Duke probably doesn't play Allen if Rasheed Sulaimon isn't dismissed from the team and it all makes for an incredible journey for this Blue Devils team.

Sad Wisconsin Teletubby Fan


Good grief. Someone buy this man a beer and give him a hug. This is the face of every Badgers fan in existence for the next week or so. Be nice to them.

Other things of note: Did Sam Dekker end up on a milk carton? After a strong first half, Dekker went AWOL ... Bo Ryan might complain about "rent-a-players," but there's no reason he can't get top-tier players moving forward. Wisconsin is as legit as they come ... Amile Jefferson's not going to get much credit, but they don't win the title without him ... The 2016 Final Four is in Houston? Looks like Frenchy's, Onyx and Galveston Beach are all in my future next year ... Yes, the referees were that bad ... Grayson Allen looks like Doug Funnie and Ted Cruz. Yes, it's okay to laugh.

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