Skip Prosser Man of the Year Award

Skip Prosser Award

 

Ben Jobe National Coach of the Year Award

Ben Jobe Award

 

Kay Yow National Coach of the Year Award

Kay Yow Award

 

Lute Olson National Player of the Year Award

Lute Olson Award

 

Jim Phelan National Coach of the Year Award

Jim Phelan Award

 

Hugh Durham National Coach of the Year Award

Hugh Durham Award

 

Lou Henson National Player of the Year Award

Lou Henson Award

 

Lefty Driesell Defensive Player of the Year Award

Lefty Driesell Award

 

 
 
 
March 17, 2010


HISTORICAL COMEBACK
by
Kyle Macy

I have been following basketball for about 50 years and I have never witnessed anything quite like what happened in Fairfax, VA on Tuesday night. As it turns, nobody has.

When George Mason’s Andre Cornelius hit a 3-pointer with 16:08 to play, the Patriots led Fairfield 63-36. After that it was all Fairfield. The Stags overcame a 27-point deficit to defeat George Mason, in overtime 101-96. The 27-point comeback is the biggest in division I postseason history.

That’s right. No team has ever done what Fairfield did on Tuesday evening.

“It’s incredible,” Fairfield head coach Ed Cooley told CollegeInsider.com after the game. “Our kids just kept fighting. They never gave up. When the game was over I knew they had done something special. I didn’t realize just how special.”

Fairfield’s Mike Evanovich came off the bench to score a career-high 32 points, including a school-record nine 3-pointers. The last came with .09 remaining, which sent the game into overtime where the Stags took control.

After managing just 36 points through the first 24 minutes, Fairfield scored 65 in the last 21 minutes.

What an amazing comeback.

ESPN’s Jason McCallum, with an assist from Jay Bilas, provided some interesting historical data. Not only was Fairfield’s 27-point comeback the best-ever in the month of March, it’s tied for the fifth largest comeback in the history of division I men’s basketball.
Large deficits have been overcome before. In 1977 New Mexico State trailed 28-0 against Bradley before rallying to win, but what makes Fairfield’s accomplishment so impressive was that they were down 27 with only 16 minutes remaining. And it was on the road. And it was in the postseason.

The CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament is quickly gaining a reputation for extraordinary postseason moments. Last year Bradley’s Chris Roberts beat Oakland with a 75-foot buzzer beater, in the CIT quarterfinals. Roberts’ shot was the longest game-winning shot in division I postseason history.

A shot and a rally so what’s next?

My only regret is that I didn’t see the shot or the comeback in person.

Lost in all the numbers is the fact that the win was Fairfield’s first in the postseason since the 1973 NIT.

“It’s a huge win for our program,” said Cooley. “I am so proud of our players. They never quit and now we have another game to play next week.”

Largest Comebacks in March: Men's Division I History
         
    Deficit Trailed Opponent
2010 Fairfield 27 63-36 George Mason
2005 Missouri State 23 42-19 Southern Illinois
2001 Duke 22 39-17 Maryland

Largest Comebacks: Men's Division I History

    Deficit Opponent
1951 Duke 32 Tulane
1994 Kentucky 31 LSU
1997 George Mason 29 St. Francis
1977 New Mexico State 28 Bradley
2010 Fairfield 27 George Mason
1999 Princeton 27 Pennsylvania

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Kyle Macy: The Biggest Comeback in Postseason History