Louisville forward Chane Behanan (21) grabs a rebound as Michigan forward Jon Horford (15) looks on during the second half of the NCAA Final Four tournament college basketball championship game Monday, April 8, 2013, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
ATLANTA (AP) -- Their best player was struggling and their main backup was on the bench with a broken leg.
Louisville still had more than enough to win its third national title.
Luke Hancock made four straight 3-pointers in the first half, and Peyton Siva and Chane Behanan had monster second halves to lead the top-seeded Cardinals (35-5) to their first national title since 1986 on Monday night with an 82-76 victory over Michigan.
Hancock finished with 22 points, including a perfect 5 for 5 from 3-point range. Siva had 14 of his 18 points in the second half, and Chane Behanan had 11 of his 12 rebounds in the second half. Behanan also chipped in 15 points.
As the final seconds ticked off, Hancock looked at the Louisville fans and screamed.
Spike Albrecht shined while Trey Burke sat.
After all that, Michigan and Louisville were still pretty much even. Then the Wolverines couldn't stop Louisville in the second half.
With Burke on the bench in early foul trouble, the seldom-used Albrecht scored 17 points in the first half, and the Wolverines led by 12 in Monday night's national title game. But that lead was only one at halftime, the Cardinals went on to win 82-76.
Albrecht and Burke both played plenty in the second half, but Michigan couldn't stop Louisville from converting around the basket. Albrecht went scoreless after halftime, leaving Burke -- the national player of the year -- to try to rally Michigan. He did his best, finishing with 24 points, but it wasn't enough.
Louisville fans gathered in various fashions to watch the Cardinals beat Michigan 82-76 Monday night for the NCAA championship.
Then came the celebration the school and the city had been waiting for since 1986.
Cardinals faithful partied in dormitories and around campus, in bars and restaurants and in living rooms all over town after Louisville claimed its third national championship.
Most chose the quiet comforts of home over the noisy crowds that assembled in the Fourth Street Live! entertainment district. But when the final gun sounded and Louisville emerged victorious at the Georgia Dome, emotions were felt everywhere.
Standing ready were Louisville police, prepared for large crowds and celebrations that have been commonplace since the Cardinals reached the Final Four and beat Wichita State in Saturday night's semifinal.