May day, May day

Thanks to Tar Heels' junior, North Carolinais NCAA champion

By Jason King

Kansas City Star

ST. LOUIS -- As he stood before them, dangling a piece of the cotton net, North Carolina center Sean May swayed and shimmied to the chants of the Tar Heel fans that filled the Edward Jones Dome on Monday.

"One more year!" they chanted at the junior. "One more year!"


Yes, in the coming weeks, May will decide whether to enter the NBA draft or return to North Carolina for his senior season. When May considers the latter, he'll ponder one glaring question: "How do you beat this?"

Seriously, what could May accomplish in his senior season that tops what he accomplished in the Tar Heels' 75-70 national title game victory over Illinois?

Playing in front of a sold-out crowd of 47,262 and millions more watching on live television, May scored a game-high 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, fueling North Carolina to its first NCAA title since 1993.

May's efforts--he made 10 of his 11 shots--won him Final Four MVP honors, the cherry on top of a splendid season in which he averaged 17.3 points.

"I'll never forget this day until I die," said May, who turned 21 Monday. "This is the best moment I've had in my whole life. This is unbelievable. I just can't believe it. All the hard work, long hours ... it's paid off. It's finally paid off."

A 6-foot-9, 258-pounder, May saved his best performance for the game's most crucial moments. Illinois, which lost just two games all season, whittled North Carolina's 15-point lead to 52-50

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