They started practicing last fall. Their first game was in November and they have been going non-stop ever since. Now, finally, the University of North Carolina Tarheels can relax and celebrate their National Championship.
The Tarheels won the Championship with a win over the Michigan State Spartans on Monday night. Both teams worked hard all season to reach the big game and both teams put in a great effort. The game was played at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. Not only was there a jam-packed crowd, but millions of fans around the world were watching the game on television.
North Carolina is one of the most popular and successful men's basketball programs in the country. UNC has now won five National Championships: 1957, 1982, 1993, 2005 and 2009. Many great NBA players were Tarheels, including Michael Jordan, one of the best basketball players in history. Jordan helped North Carolina win the National Championship in 1982 and was named the National Player of the Year in 1984.
One of North Carolina's best players, Tyler Hansbrough, won the National Player of the Year award last season when he was a junior. This season he was again one of the country's best players and a big reason why North Carolina won the Championship. Another great player for North Carolina this season was point guard Ty Lawson, who won the award for the best player in the Atlantic Coast Conference. Lawson injured his foot before the NCAA Tournament, but was so determined to help his team win the Championship that he played hurt. Wayne Ellington was also a key player for North Carolina and was named the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four.
North Carolina also had a lot of help from players like Danny Green, Deon Thompson, Bobby Frasor and Ed Davis. All of these players contributed to the team effort and did their jobs. Stars like Hansbrough, Lawson and Ellington couldn't win the Title by themselves. They needed help from all of their teammates. And because everybody chipped in, the Tarheels are the National Champions.
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