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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- WDRB's Rick Bozich and Gilbert Corsey ran into a human icon from U of L's history just before the big celebration at the KFC Yum! Center Wednesday afternoon: former U of L men's basketball coach Denny Crum.
Crum led the team to win two NCAA Championships during his tenure, in 1980 and 1986. He shared what was going through his mind Monday night when he watched U of L cinch their third NCAA win.
"I thought, boy, I said, 'If we're going to win...this team ought to do it,' because they had the ability to come from behind. They played hard every time out. They had a lot of different pieces that really fit together well."
"You have to be able to handle the pressure and come through at the right time," Crum added. "They had so many different guys do that. Tim Henderson in that semifinal game stepped up and made two threes when they were down 12 points, or something like that. And would they have won without it? I don't think so. And then you turn around and you get Luke Hancock hit four 3s in a row, and Peyton running that team and getting the ball to the open man, and Chane coming on and played a magnificent second half for the Cards. Just so many pieces that really fit."
Crum said today, he felt the spirit of Cardinal Nation during a trip to Taco Bell.
"Everybody was in there yelling and screaming, 'Go Cards!'" he said. "It was that way every place I've been today -- which is the way it should be. This community -- there's a lot of people here that go way, way back. I have been at the university 42 years. There's a lot of people been here longer than that. They remember, but so many of the young ones haven't had the opportunity to experience a championship team. So this, for them, is a special thing. It's a special thing for this whole community. And the university can be very proud of this team."