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What it means when Jim Nantz gives a player his tie after the game

A player on either Connecticut or San Diego State will get the legendary broadcaster's tie after the game.

HOUSTON — After the UConn-San Diego State game at NRG Stadium on Monday night, a player on one of those teams will get a special keepsake -- a necktie from legendary broadcaster Jim Nantz.

It’ll have added meaning because Nantz is leaving his Final Four broadcasting duties after the championship game.

KHOU 11 sports reporter Daniel Gotera stumbled on the tradition seven years ago in Houston.

Earlier this week, Nantz was given the key to the City of Houston. And at the championship game, he’ll be the one giving out an unexpected gift as he did back in 2016 when Villanova won on a buzzer-beater.

Ryan Arcidiacono was the recipient that year.

“It’s a personal Final Four tradition," Nantz said. "The tie symbolizes a lot to me. My father, who taught me how to tie a tie; I just felt years ago that I wanted to do something to honor a senior on the team that wins the title."

"Jim Nantz came up to me, stopped me. I just thanked him for a great tournament," Arcidiacono said. "I was just in awe. I didn’t know what to say."

Who gets it after San Diego State-UConn? The criteria is simple for Nantz.

“I bring a new tie every year to the game and I find a player, who I’m inspired by everything about them," he said. "Everything they do on the floor, everything they do in the classroom."

Whichever player gets it, it’ll be a great keepsake to keep along with the national championship.

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