Donte DiVincenzo may have started the game on the bench, but he finished it on the podium clutching a national championship trophy and owning Most Outstanding Player accolades.
The Villanova sophomore had a dominant performance in the Wildcats’ 79-62 dismantling of Michigan on Monday in the NCAA tournament title game in San Antonio.
DiVencenzo had 31 points on 10 of 15 shooting from the floor, including 5 of 7 from deep. He also had five rebounds, three assists and two blocks.
“Even if we had played our best,” Michigan head coach John Beilein added, “it would have been very difficult to win that game with what DiVincenzo did. It was an incredible performance. Sometimes those individual performances just beat you, and you just say, ‘OK, we played you the best we could, and tonight, you were better than us.'”
While a reserve, DiVencenzo’s performance wasn’t exactly a surprise as he’s had his moments this season, but his scoring production had taken a dip toward the end of the regular season. A 31-point outburst in a national championship game is something that Jalen Brunson or Mikal Bridges might be counted on for, but DiVencenzo’s huge night will make him a tournament legend.
The question now will be about DiVencenzo’s pro prospects. He certainly helped his cause with NBA evaluators with a huge night that not only featured a great offensive performance, but a versatile one as well. Plus, he played more than a little defense. Given his play and the buzz it no doubt generated, it would be surprising if he didn’t at least go through the draft process and at least hear what NBA teams have to say.