After an up and down 2013 season, the Cyclones headed into the NCAA Tournament with a myriad of expectations. But after a shellacking of Notre Dame in the first round, the 10th seeded Cyclones sprinted headfirst into the Ohio State Buckeyes, and one Aaron Craft.
With the game tied at 75 and 30 seconds left, Craft received the ball at the top of the key, called for a screen, stared down Georges Niang, and buried a 3 that sent shock waves through our fan base.
Craft was shooting an incredulously awful 30% from 3 that season, and by all accounts, was the guy you wanted taking that last shot (for reference, Marcus Smart was a career 29.5% 3 point shooter at Oklahoma State).
And that’s what made his shot even tougher to swallow.
Here are a few things you may have forgotten from this game:
- Chris Babb’s injury that kept him from being on the court for a large chunk of the game. This is an important thing to remember because Iowa State had been taking out Georges on defense and subbing in Bubu Palo towards the end of the game. However, if Babb was able to play, there was no way Georges would’ve been on the floor for that final defensive possession. Fred had elected to take out Tyrus McGee before the play started, so the lineup at the time was Lucious, Palo, Clyburn, Ejim, and Niang. Throw Babb out there instead of Niang, and that’s a switch you live with.
- The “Charge” call that was called on Clyburn taken by, you guessed it, Aaron Craft.
- Ejim missing an easy rebound that led to the eventual game winner.
- Iowa State going on a 15-2 run to take the lead a few minutes earlier.
- Iowa State also going scoreless in the final 2 minutes.
Anyways, here are the last 4ish minutes of the game. I’m gonna go hide out in a cave and never think about this ever again.