Rob Gray capped a career performance in a thrilling game with one of the best moves that you’ll see in this tournament.
After a ridiculous series of possessions — we’ll get to that — left the game tied and 26 seconds left, Gray simply dribbled out the clock, waited for his moment and did exactly what everyone in the world knew that he was going to do.
He won the game, the first for the Houston program since 1984:
The final score was 67-65.
How did we get there?
I’m glad you asked, because it was absolutely insane.
And simply putting it into words would not do it justice.
And all of that happened after San Diego State had erased a 13-point second half deficit. Those two threes that Devin Watson hit were the first two times that the Aztecs had been tied since early in the first half.
But this game was about Gray.
We spent a lot of time prior to the start of the tournament talking about things like “Who is the new Shabazz Napier?” and “What teams can make a run in the tournament?” and “What team outside of the top four seeds can get to a Final Four?”
I’m ashamed to admit to the fact that I did not consider Gray or Houston for anything like that.
I didn’t even have them winning the first game of the NCAA tournament, and while my pick might have looked prescient had Trey Kell made that three that he got on the final possession of the game, it looks silly now.
Houston was one of the hottest teams in college basketball in the second half of the season. That’s carried over to the first round of the NCAA tournament. How long will that run last?