KANSAS CITY, Mo. - It takes a killer instinct to win NCAA Tournament championships. UA head coach Lute Olson looked out on the floor yesterday and saw five Hannibal Lecters in white jerseys.
Arizona spat in the face of Cinderella yesterday afternoon, defeating an upstart Butler club 73-52 after leading by just four points at halftime. UA advanced to the Sweet 16 by playing on its strengths - size and depth - and exploiting the weaknesses of a club that had neither.
This isn't the UA team that lost to Stanford in January. This isn't even the team that beat USC by 44 points in mid-February.
This team is mean.
Arizona didn't substitute yesterday afternoon - it reloaded. Substitute forwards Luke Walton, Eugene Edgerson and Justin Wessel combined for 12 points, 17 rebounds and three blocks in the win.
"It seemed like every time the horn sounded, they were substituting another player," Butler head coach Thad Matta said. "It was 6 (foot) 9 for 6 (foot) 9. They're a different team than we played in December. They just kept coming at you. That's a mark of a great team, and Arizona's a great team."