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The VCU Rams men's basketball team reached the Final Four of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament in 2011. This was an unexpected and remarkable achievement for the team, which had to win five games in a row, including victories over several higher-seeded teams, to reach the Final Four.
VCU, which stands for Virginia Commonwealth University, was a mid-major program from the Colonial Athletic Association, a conference not typically known for producing Final Four contenders. However, led by head coach Shaka Smart, the Rams played with great energy and enthusiasm, employing a fast-paced, pressing style of defense that flustered opponents and led to numerous turnovers and fast-break opportunities.
In the Final Four, VCU faced the Butler Bulldogs, another mid-major team that had made a surprising run to the Final Four. In a close and exciting game, Butler prevailed over VCU, 70-62, ending the Rams' remarkable tournament run.
Despite the loss, VCU's performance in the 2011 NCAA Tournament was widely celebrated and admired, and it helped raise the profile of the program and the conference.
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