Kansas defeats Ohio State, will play Kentucky for the championship

NEW ORLEANS – It will be Kentucky vs. Kansas Monday night around 9:20 ET for the national title.

In what was one of the tightest, most exciting games of this year's NCAA tournament, the Jayhawks overcame a 13-point first-half deficit to defeat the Buckeyes, 64-62.

It was all Ohio State at the outset; it led by 13 with 6:11 remaining before the break. Kansas had nine turnovers in the first half. To be honest, in the first half, the game looked like a snoozer. It wasn't good -- or pretty. Tyshawn Taylor was 2-of-7 from the field, accenting Kansas' failures.

Then, the second half came, Kansas came harder, and the unpredictable battled turned this into one of the most entertaining national semifinals we’ve seen in the last five years. The teams traded leads often in the final 10 minutes. Kansas took the lead for good with 1:35 remaining when Travis Releford sunk two free throws to make it 60-59, Jayhawks.

KU star forward Thomas Robinson led the team with 19 points. His big man Ohio State counterpart, Jared Sullinger, wasn't as effective, scoring 13 points on 5-of-19 shooting. William Buford led the Bucks with 19.

The game was in doubt after a controversial traveling call against Jeff Withey with 27 seconds left when the score was 62-59. Buford followed a Deshaun Thomas forced 3-point with a dunk at the 9.6-second mark. Taylor hit two free throws with 8.3 seconds to go. A Taylor turnover gave OSU a chance, but the Jayhawks fouled Aaron Craft before he could take a 3 to tie the game. The second free throw bounced off, Kansas got the board and the win.

The Jayhawks will make their ninth appearance in an NCAA title game.
CBS Sports Writer

Matt Norlander is a national award-winning writer who has been with CBS Sports since 2010. He's in his seventh season covering college basketball for CBS, and also covers the NBA Draft, the Olympics and... Full Bio

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