Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 5:36 pm
When University of Connecticut star basketball player Shabazz Napier told reporters right after winning the NCAA Division I men's basketball national championship he sometimes went to bed hungry, you could almost hear the collective gasp from mothers around the country.
Most famously, Babe Ruth has been credited with saving baseball after the Black Sox scandal. Riding on the wave of the women's movement, Billie Jean King more or less created women's professional tennis. And Muhammad Ali kept boxing alive for its last hurrah.
But really, especially over a sustained period of time, has any one athlete ever mattered so much to a sport as Tiger Woods does to men's golf?
Click on the audio link above to hear Deford's take on the issue.
The Connecticut Huskies are the new NCAA champions, after beating a talented but young Kentucky Wildcats team in the men's final played in Arlington, Texas. UConn notched its fourth — and most unlikely — national title by outplaying a feisty Kentucky squad; the Huskies never trailed in Monday night's game.
Millions of people will be glued to TV screens Monday watching the NCAA men's college basketball championship — and some of those viewers will actually be in the stands.
Monday's Connecticut vs. Kentucky game will be played at AT&T Stadium, home to the Dallas Cowboys, where an enormous Mitsubishi screen hangs from the roof. It's the length of four coach buses by 72 feet high. And while the screen is ridiculously huge, the picture quality of the LED 1080 high definition is amazing.