Utah's Andre Miller and Michael Doleac weren't named to any all-American teams this year.
But they'll be playing for the national championship Monday night after leading their team to still another NCAA victory Saturday night at the Alamodome.Meanwhile, all-Americans Antawn Jamison and Vince Carter of North Carolina will be joining all-Americans Mike Bibby and Miles Simon of Arizona on the sidelines when the national championship game is played.
Miller was the first to say he didn't play as well as a week earlier when he had that monster game against Arizona with 18 points 14 rebounds and 13 assists. But his 16-point, 14- rebound, seven-assist performance Saturday wasn't too far behind.
North Carolina had no answer for Miller who directed the Ute offense, drove strong to the basket and came up with all those rebounds.
Doleac, who has been playing his best ball of the year throughout the postseason, came up with 16 points and five rebounds and some terrific defense on college player of the year Jamison, who struggled all night against Doleac and Hanno Mottola.
In a surprise move, the Utes started Doleac on Jamison, even though Jamison obviously had a big advantage with his quickness. Jamison threw up several wild shots and finished with just 7 of 19 for the night. Besides Mottola, even freshmen Britton Johnsen and Trace Caton took turns on Jamison.
"I tried to stay behind him and make him make shots over me," said Doleac. "If he did that, he would earn it. We wanted to make sure to keep him off a low block and block him out as soon as possible."
Miller was a rover part of the night on defense but mostly played man-to-man, sometimes helping out with the post men. "The coaches said I could pretty much 'monster' down to Jamison anytime I wanted."
When asked about his second straight 14-rebound game, Miller said, "I basically have to rebound all the time. I try to be wherever the ball goes. Why not help them out and get some rebounds, you know."
As for Kentucky, Doleac had joked before the game that if the Utes won Saturday, they'd have to face the Wildcats for the third year in a row.
"It is another chance at them," he said. "You work the whole season to get here. We never knew how far we could come, but now we have a shot."
Michael Andre Antwan Vince
Doleac Miller Jamison Carter
Min 25 37 37 32
FGM 6 7 7 10
FGA 11 15 19 16
3M 0 0 0 1
3A 1 3 1 4
FTM 4 2 0 0
FTA 7 7 2 1
REB 5 14 12 5
ASST 1 7 1 0
STL 0 1 1 0
BLK 1 0 0 3
PTS 16 16 14 21