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Kansas vs. Kentucky: John Calipari Will Exorcise Past Demons To Win NCAA Title

NEW ORLEANS, LA - MARCH 30:  Head coach John Calipari of the Kentucky Wildcats looks on during practice prior to the 2012 Final Four of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on March 30, 2012 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
Justin WeltonAnalyst IIApril 1, 2012

John Calipari couldn't get it done in Massachusetts with the Naismith College Player of the Year, Marcus Camby. Calipari couldn't get it done in Memphis with the No. 1 pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, Derrick Rose, against Kansas in the NCAA Championship Game.

He was one three-point miss by Kansas' Mario Chalmers away from winning the national title.

After countless miscues and disappointing finishes with extraordinary athletes, Calipari will exorcise his demons to win the 2012 NCAA Championship.

Despite having amazing talent at UMass and Memphis, this is Calipari's best team. Led by consensus National Player of the Year Anthony Davis, the Wildcats have powered through five games in the 2012 NCAA Tournament.

It's not just Davis, however. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist will be a top-five pick in the 2012 NBA Draft if he decides to leave after his freshman season.

He leads by example.

His teammates see how much he works on both sides of the floor. His size allows him to guard multiple positions on defense and he isn't shy about wanting to cover the opposing team's best player.

Kidd-Gilchrist is often on the floor for loose balls, makes clutch buckets and forces turnovers that lead to transition buckets.

ATLANTA, GA - MARCH 25:  Michael Kidd-Gilchrist #14 of the Kentucky Wildcats celebrates their 82 to 70 win over the Baylor Bears during the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball South Regional Final at the Georgia Dome on March 25, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. Kidd-Gil
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

You almost forget that Kentucky has guys like Doron Lamb, Marquis Teague, Terrence Jones and Darius Miller. They have the best six-man rotation in the country.

All six players can do multiple things on the floor and they have bought in to playing defense. Credit that to Calipari for getting his guys to play as a unit.

How about a senior leader? People love to point out how Kentucky is full of one-year players who bolt to the NBA.

While that is mostly the case, this year's team is slightly different. Miller has provided that senior experience, Jones (sophomore) can chip in with rebounding and scoring and Lamb (sophomore) can run the point when Teague is on the bench and shoot lights-out from the perimeter.

If not now, when? Calipari has to seal the deal with his best team ever. There is no excuse for Kentucky to lose in the championship game with what has been the best team all season long.

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