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Webber's TO vs Tar Heels among iconic March Madness moments

by Jeffrey Gleeson (2020-06-13)

lawyer stole from law firm - The most famous timeout called in the history of the NCAA Tournament has been variously called the biggest mistake, the biggest choke, the most embarrassing gaffe, all because that timeout didn't actually exist.

Eric Montross calls it a perfectly executed defensive strategy.

It was the waning seconds of the 1993 title game, and Michigan star Chris Webber had just pulled down a rebound off a missed foul shot by North Carolina with 20 seconds left. He appeared to travel and signal for timeout, then ultimately dribbled up the floor with all the grace of a baby giraffe before whirling around amid a double-team and calling again for timeout.

Fans tend to remember that much. They also remember the incredulous voices of CBS broadcasters Jim Nantz and Billy Packer exclaiming that the Wolverines had no timeouts, and the ensuing technical foul effectively ended the game.

"To me," said Montross, the Tar Heels' star center, "this is what we practiced all the time, which is you want to put the other team if you can trap them in the corner, you trap them in the corner. We did that all season long."

Fans don't seem to remember that part of the equation. And when the Tar Heels went on to beat Michigan and its Fab Five, 77-71, the Webber timeout went down in history as one of the tournament's key plays.

FILE - In this April 5, 1993, file photo, Michigan's Chris Webber (4) stands by as North Carolina's Eric Montross celebrates during North Carolina's technical foul shots in the final seconds of the NCAA Final Four championship game at the Superdome in New Orleans. Webber called a time out Michigan did not have, and Michigan was charged with a technical foul and lost possession of the ball. Donald Williams made all four free throws and North Carolina won the national title 77-71. (AP Photo/Susan R