5 Reasons Why UConn Basketball is in the 2014 NCAA Championship Game

5 Reasons Why UConn is in the 2014 NCAA Championship Game

UConn Title Game
Matthew Emmons - USATODAY Sports

To the surprise of many, the Connecticut Huskies have reached college basketball's national championship game, doing so for the second time in four years. Although surprising, here are five seasons why the Huskies have made it to the title game.

5. Free Throw Shooting

Ryan Boatright
Bob Donnan - USATODAY Sports

5. Free Throw Shooting

Ryan Boatright
Bob Donnan - USATODAY Sports

It's an often overlooked part of the game, but the Huskies have made 93 of their 105 free throw attempts during the NCAA tournament, and that amazingly high percentage has given them the lift they've need in close games to survive and advance.

4. Kevin Ollie

Kevin Ollie
Troy Taormina - USATODAY Sports

4. Kevin Ollie

Kevin Ollie
Troy Taormina - USATODAY Sports

Ollie has done a masterful job of coaching throughout the tournament, not only motivating his players to get the best out of them, but out-coaching his counterparts. Ollie going with his small lineup in the national semi-final was a genius move that carried the Huskies past the tournament's top overall seed and into the national title game.

3. Defense

UConn Defense
Robert Deutsch - USATODAY Sports

3. Defense

UConn Defense
Robert Deutsch - USATODAY Sports

The late stages of the tournament have been all about defenses for the Huskies. Connecticut has taken both Michigan State and Florida completely out of their comfort zone and forced turnovers that have led to easy points, which is one of the biggest reasons why the Huskies are in the title game.

2. DeAndre Daniels

DeAndre Daniels UConn
Bob Donnan - USATODAY Sports

2. DeAndre Daniels

DeAndre Daniels UConn
Bob Donnan - USATODAY Sports

There have been a lot of significant individual performances that have helped put the Huskies in the title game, but 20 points and 10 rebounds from DeAndre Daniels in the national semi-finals may be the most important. Daniels was the tallest player on the floor for UConn for large stretches of the game, making him an essential part of the Huskies beating Florida and advancing to Monday night's championship game.

1. Shabazz Napier

Connecticut Final Four
Adam Hunger - USATODAY Sports

1. Shabazz Napier

Connecticut Final Four
Adam Hunger - USATODAY Sports

If Connecticut wins Monday, Napier will likely be the player of the tournament. He's made clutch shot after clutch shot, played great defense, and even after Florida was able to hold him to just 12 points, Napier is averaging 21 points per game during the tournament. He's been phenomenal throughout the tournament and he's the biggest reason why the Huskies are playing in the national championship game.

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