1998 Kentucky vs Utah


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1998 NCAA® Division I

Men’s Basketball Championship

Kentucky vs. Utah

March 30, 1998 – San Antonio, Texas

Trailing at half-time, Kentucky’s Wildcats were hard pressed to maintain their new nickname, “The Comeback Cats.”  No team had won the final with a trailing margin of more than 8 points throughout the history of the tournament, and Kentucky was behind by 10.

The Wildcats accomplished what no other team had done in a final game before.  Finding new life in the second half as the Utes were wearing down, Kentucky won by 9 for a final score of 78-69.  Kentucky Coach Orlando “Tubby” Smith earned not only his first title, but also was named NCAA’s winningest first-year coach at any school.  Jeff Sheppard, University of Kentucky, was named Most Outstanding Player.

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