Why Dana Altman was actually really stupid in the Final Four.

In the final seconds of the North Carolina (UNC) vs. Oregon NCAA Men’s basketball semi-final, Dana Altman made a huge stupid strategic mistake that very few have realized. With 5.8 seconds and again with 4.0 seconds left in the game a North Carolina player attempted a second free throw attempt after missing his first free throw attempt. In both cases a North Carolina player secured the rebound after a second missed free throw and UNC was able to run out the clock with a one point victory. Yes, Jordan Bell should have secured at least one of those rebounds for Oregon, and Kennedy Meeks did shove Mr. Bell in the back on the last free throw of the game. More importantly, it actually should not have even come to that.

Dana Altman, Oregon’s head coach, actually should have instructed his players to intentionally commit a lane violation on either of the second free throw attempts after the first miss. Further, he should have instructed his players to continue to commit lane violations until the UNC player successfully made their second free throw. The purpose of this violation would insure two things: UNC has a two point lead and Oregon would have the ball with either 5.8 or 4.0 seconds remaining. In either case insuring that UNC would have a two point lead, instead of one, guaranteed that Oregon would once again gain possession of the ball and could run an inbounds play that had been rehearsed many times over the course of the season. With such limited time on the clock UNC earning an extra point at the free throw line actually would be of little consequence as Oregon’s last shot attempt would naturally be a three point attempt. If that attempt went in Oregon would have won the game by only one point, instead of two. Either way they could of had a shot to put them in tonight’s game, but instead they never touched the ball again in the last 5.8 seconds of the game.