NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - APRIL 02: Caleb Love #2 of the North Carolina Tar Heels reacts in the second half of the game against the Duke Blue Devils during the 2022 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament Final Four semifinal at Caesars Superdome on April 02, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

And so ends the the reign of Duke Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski, whose Duke Blue Devils couldn’t hit big shots down the stretch, and struggled against North Carolina’s size inside the paint, as the Tar Heels came away with a breathtaking 81-77 victory in the Final Four.

Krzyzewski, whose 41 years as Duke men’s basketball head coach that includes a record 13 trips to the Final Four and five National Titles, saw his career come to a bitter conclusion at the hands of the Duke’s arch ACC rival.

In his postgame conference, Krzyzewski said it wasn’t about him, and that the focus should be on his players, who after losing to this same North Carolina team a month ago in the regular season finale at Cameron Indoor Stadium, carried the coach to a remarkable, last Final Four appearance.

I’ll be fine,” Coach K said. “I’ve been blessed to be in the arena. And when you’re in the arena, you’re either going to come out feeling great or you’re going to feel agony, but you always will feel great about being in the arena.

“And I’m sure that that’s the thing when I’ll look back that I’ll miss. I won’t be in the arena anymore. But, damn, I was in the arena for a long time. And these kids made my last time in the arena an amazing one.”

With Duke’s story now over, the attention turns to what will be a unique NCAA men’s final: UNC vs. Kansas, also known as the Roy Williams Invitational.

Williams’ who retired as UNC head coach last season, was in the stands cheering on his Tar Heels to victory, might feel a little mixed emotions when the two programs he helped build go head-to-head on Monday night.

Williams coached the JayHawks from 1988 to 2003, and turned the program into a March powerhouse. That tradition has certainly has not waned under Bill Self, obviously, as he had Kansas in the Final Four for the fourth time, and in the title game for their time since taking over for Williams.

This year’s Jayhawks have been one of the best teams in the country, and have only gotten better as the tournament has raged on. They trailed Miami at the half of their Elite Eight match-up, before rolling 47 points on the Hurricanes in the second half.

Then last night, they blew out the Villanova Wild Cats 81-65 to get to the title game.

Kansas’ guard play of Ochai Agbaji and Christian Braun have been outstanding, and Kansas’ speed will be a challenge for the muscle of the Tar Heels.

It’s going to be a good one to finish off an epic tournament.