Jared Butler led all scorers with 22 points, and the Bears dominated the glass 38-22 while shooting 10-23 from three-point range. The junior Butler was also named Most Outstanding Player of the tournament.
The Zags (31-1) were 40 minutes from becoming the first undefeated team since the 1976 Indiana Hoosiers. Instead their finish came up far short of what was necessary against a Baylor team that was more physical and made more shots. Gonzaga was just 5-17 from three-point range, and took 18 less shots overall because of all the conceded second opportunities via offensive rebounds.
It’s Baylor’s first national championship in their third appearance in the Final Four. The Bears reached the national semifinals in both 1948 and 1950. For head coach Scott Drew, it’s his first national championship in 17 seasons at the school that hired him away from Valparaiso in 2003.