The Michigan State Spartans and the Troy Trojans meet up at the Final Four tournament in New Orleans. Malcolm, a boy from the inner city whose sister was killed in a drive by shooting and who is only looking out for himself, and MJ (Michael Jordan, an unfortunate name for a boy who likes to play basketball!), who is trying to do well in school and make a better life for himself, play for MSU. Roko, a boy whose journalist uncle was killed in Croatia, and Crispin, who is from who is from Louisiana and engaged to a popular cheerleader, are on the Trojan side. Tempers flare as the competition heats up, and drama unfolds behind the scenes as well as on the court. Play-by-plays and basketball commentary abound, and the minutiae of player recruitment is well covered. There is a lot of discussion about the financial hardships placed on the families of players who are getting an education, but may not have a lot of money for living expenses, a concern that has had long ranging implications at The Ohio State University! In particular, Malcolm runs into problems that may impact the success of his entire team, even though his goal is to leave college without graduating and go pro.