ARLINGTON, Texas — Whether they’re setting up game-winning shots or hitting them, Andrew and Aaron Harrison have become the maestros orchestrating Kentucky’s unexpected run to the Final Four.
Andrew is the point guard who runs the show. He’s dished out 21 assists in four NCAA tournament games, including six in a win over Michigan that sent the Wildcats to Dallas.
Aaron is the shooting guard with the hot outside stroke. He had 12 points against the Wolverines, including the deciding 3-pointer with 2.3 seconds left in a 75-72 victory.
Naturally, his twin brother made the pass.
Now, the Harrison boys will try to guide Kentucky past Wisconsin in the national semifinals tonight, and move one step close to winning the Wildcats’ ninth national title.
“It’s a great feeling. Not too many people get to reach the Final Four,” said Aaron, older than his brother by a minute, “so now that we’re here, we’re just trying to stay focused.”
Good luck with that.
Everyone wants a piece of the Harrisons, who grew up near Houston and are Texan through-and-through — even if they made the cardinal sin of choosing the round ball over the pigskin.
They have gleaming smiles that flash pearly white teeth, making them the darlings of the TV folks. Their effervescent personalities charm writers, if you can coax them out of that shell that they sometimes erect. And they have a biting sense of humor that borders on crude, according to teammates who’ve been reduced to tears by a well-timed joke in the locker room.
“The Harrisons, good family, mom and dad raised them and did right,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said. “They were coached, they are skilled. They just had to be challenged in a lot of different ways that they had never been challenged.”