Jalen Suggs on Final Four Win in OT vs. UCLA: 'I Can't Put This One into Words'

Blake SchusterSenior Analyst IIIApril 4, 2021

Gonzaga guard Jalen Suggs (1) shoots over UCLA guard David Singleton (34) to win the game during overtime in a men's Final Four NCAA college basketball tournament semifinal game, Saturday, April 3, 2021, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Gonzaga won 93-90. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy/Associated Press

Jalen Suggs was at a near loss for words on Saturday as he tried to explain how it feels to hit one of the biggest shots in NCAA tournament history.  

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With 3.3 seconds left, and tied with UCLA in overtime at 90, Suggs took three dribbles down the floor, set his feet and sent the No. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs to the national championship game with a banked-in three-pointer that's now unquestionably the defining moment of the 2021 tournament.

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“I can’t put this one into words. Turning dreams into reality.” Jalen Suggs reflects on the Zags' special @marchmadness run https://t.co/0fC8HCuXOH

"This was great," Suggs said. "Extremely special. I can't put this into words, you know? Turning dreams into reality."

Suggs said he'd been missing his half-court heaves lately but had no trouble getting one to fall with the game on the line. 

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Suggs: "That’s something you practice on your mini-hoop as a kid, just messing around.... It’s juts crazy." He adds: "Stuff like this is something your dream of as a kid." Such raw and genuine emotion. "That was one of the most special games I've ever been a part of."

On Monday night he'll get a chance to do something even more meaningful as the 31-0 Zags attempt to become the first undefeated national champions since the 1975-76 Indiana Hoosiers went 32-0 en route to the title. 

The Bulldogs will face No. 1 Baylor—arguably the second-best team in college basketball this season—in a long awaited showdown between the two programs. 

Suggs finished the night with 16 points, six assists and five rebounds. He made only one of four three-point attempts on the night before his last-second shot banked in. Odds are he'll be a bit more confident from deep by Monday night. 

If nothing else, the freshman from Minnesota has forever etched his name into NCAA tournament lore with a shot that calls to mind Mario Chalmers, Christian Laettner, Lorenzo Charles and Kris Jenkins before him. For a 2021 tournament that didn't feature any buzzer-beaters before the Final Four, there was no shortage of madness as the Bulldogs sent No. 11 UCLA home in unforgettable fashion.