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NCAA Final Four Takes Shape

Butler's Khyle Marshall dunks past Florida's Erik Murphy during the NCAA Southeast regional college basketball championship game on March 26.
Patrick Semansky
/
AP
Butler's Khyle Marshall dunks past Florida's Erik Murphy during the NCAA Southeast regional college basketball championship game on March 26.

The men's NCAA tournament sends its last two teams to the Final Four with two regional finals: Kansas vs. Virginia Commonwealth University and North Carolina vs. Kentucky.

On Saturday, tiny Butler University secured a spot in the NCAA Final Four for the second year in a row, defeating the University of Florida 74-71in overtime.

Butler was down 11 in the second half. And though last year the Bulldogs made clear they should not be underestimated, here they are again, NPR's Mike Pesca told host Liane Hansen.

Later in the day, the University of Connecticut advanced to the Final Four after defeating the Arizona Wildcats 65-63.

"If the Butler game hadn't been one of these all-time great games, people would be talking about what a great game Connecticut was," Pesca says.

On Sunday, the VCU Rams play the Kansas Jayhawks, the only remaining No. 1 team and President Obama's pick for overall winner this year. The two teams play in San Antonio at 2:20 p.m. EST.

Later, the North Carolina Tar Heels and the Kentucky Wildcats play in Newark, N.J. at 5:05 p.m. EST.

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Liane Hansen has been the host of NPR's award-winning Weekend Edition Sunday for 20 years. She brings to her position an extensive background in broadcast journalism, including work as a radio producer, reporter, and on-air host at both the local and national level. The program has covered such breaking news stories as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the capture of Saddam Hussein, the deaths of Princess Diana and John F. Kennedy, Jr., and the Columbia shuttle tragedy. In 2004, Liane was granted an exclusive interview with former weapons inspector David Kay prior to his report on the search for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The show also won the James Beard award for best radio program on food for a report on SPAM.