Monday, February 11, 2013

Another ‘No Call’ Determines Outcome Of Game

END GAME SCRUM (Mary Schwalm/AP Photo)

Three ACC officials were rushed to Boston General last night after swallowing their whistles in the final moments of Boston College’s game against #4 Duke.

“Mff dmmf ffmafm mff mwf muppsffed mf df,” said Jim Burr as headed out the door with a string hanging out of his mouth. An ACC representative later told T.A.H., “He said “I did what I was supposed to do.”*

With Duke up one point 62-61 and Boston College having the final possession, Eagle freshmen Oliver Hanlan missed a short jumper and teamate Ryan Anderson grabbed the rebound. But before Anderson could shoot a potential game winner, Duke sophomore Quinn Cook pushed one BC player out of the way (with both hands) and executed a perfect slide tackle on Ryan.  Cook celebrated his play, and Duke’s narrow escape, by running around the court holding up his index finger. 

Interestingly, the game announcers on ESPNU noted the scrum and then correctly noted that BC would never get that call.  They then used those two ridiculous words to describe the play - “no call.”  It would appear that Cook’s play was not intentional and that his momentum carried him into Anderson.  That said, it would have been whistled a foul at any other point in the game.

So congrats to the ACC.  You managed to effectively enforce the rules for 39 minutes and 55 seconds, but when the outcome of the game was in the balance, you followed tradition and let the “players decide the outcome.”  Unfortunately, yet again, the player that broke the rules decided that outcome.

(Mary Schwalm/AP Photo)
The Associated Press described the incident with no mention of Cook, saying “Anderson grabbed the rebound but lost control as he fell to the floor...”  Coaches, players and (in most cases) fans don’t complain about this because they will be called sore losers or cry babies and they have all grown-up with this situation and have simply accepted it.

“It is what it is”  seems to be the general lament.  What “it is” is wrong, not to mention stupid and unfair and an absurd tradition.  Be consistent, it’s that simple. It if it’s a foul one second into a game it should be a foul with one second left in the game.  

We assume that this morning, the ACC is congratulating itself for “getting it right” and letting the “players decide the outcome.”  Lost in this ridiculous “tradition,” for lack of a better word, is the simple fact that the players who break the rules in end-game situations have a clear advantage when the officials click on the mute button. 

*Items in italics may not be true.

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