FINALS WATCH: Father-son routine steals show

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The award-winning country singer-songwriter did get his start in mainstream music in the mid-1990s as the frontman of the band Hootie & The Blowfish. He released his third country album last year, including the No. 1 hit “Wagon Wheel.”

Rucker was backed for his NCAA championship game performance by the Jazz Singers vocal ensemble from Booker T. Washington High School for the Performance and Visual Arts in Dallas.

- Stephen Hawkins - https://twitter.com/hawkaptexas

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Absolutely no chance that that Susan Hughes would forget where she was parked Monday night.

Hughes and the rest of her party of hardcore Kentucky fan backed up their Wildcats blue pickup truck right underneath a billboard of a screaming Louisville fan decked in red.

In case you haven’t heard, Kentucky and Louisville backers aren’t exactly fond of each other. Hughes, 55, of Paducah, used the occasion to torment a friend who works at Louisville.

“I took that picture and sent it to him and said ‘Thinking of you,’” said Hughes, wearing a blue No. 11 jersey for former guard John Wall.

Not surprisingly, Big Blue Nation turned out in force at AT&T Stadium. Kentucky fans outnumbered Connecticut fans by about 4-to-1 in the parking lots about two hours before the game.

Hughes and fellow tailgater Terry Donovan, 62, also of Paducah, were the pictures of Southern hospitality pregame, graciously offering food to bystanders. On the menu were “one-and-done” zucchinis in a joking nod to the freshman-filled Kentucky team.

Hughes has been really basking the Kentucky success the last few days. She and her son are Kentucky graduates; her husband and two daughters went to Louisville.

“We have ‘house divided’ stuff and license plates, and when they play it’s really, really bad,” Hughes said.

- Genaro Armas - https://twitter.com/GArmasAP

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NCAA Finals Watch follows the Final Four games and all the activities surrounding the event as seen by journalists from The Associated Press in North Texas - from the big stadium in Arlington where the games are being played to downtown Dallas.

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