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YouTube Gold: Northern Iowa’s Second Great March Madness Moment

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An iconic moment in NCAA history

NCAA Basketball Tournament - First Round - Northern Iowa v Texas
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - MARCH 18: Paul Jesperson #4 of the Northern Iowa Panthers hits a half court three pointer at the buzzer to defeat the Texas Longhorns with a score of 75 to 72 during the first round of the 2016 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Chesapeake Energy Arena on March 18, 2016 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

On Thursday was featured Ali Farokhmanesh’s great 2010 shot against Kansas so we thought it was only fair to follow that up with Paul Jesperson’s clutch shot for the Panthers.

This game was in 2016 and Northern Iowa was playing Texas. The Longhorns had tied this game 72-72 when Northern Iowa got the ball for the final play with 2.7 left on the game clock.

UNI inbounded the ball to Jesperson - a Virginia transfer, by the way - who caught it on the sideline near the Texas scoreboard and two Texas defenders. He cut towards the middle of the court, sidestepping both. As he approached the half-court line, with 1.9 left, he started to bring the ball up.

One Longhorn was left and he contested the shot, but not too much because obviously fouling would be disastrous. So he put his hand up and Jesperson shot over him.

Look how high that shot goes though - and then banks in. It’s a magnificent buzzer beater.

One of the best parts of this is right after the shot goes in. A staffer rushes off the bench, heading for the celebration before he remembers he’s not a player. So he turns away and rushes off to celebrate with whoever he can find. That was very good of him.