Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Rutgers gets screwed in Tennessee
Sorry to be somewhat vulgar, but I can't think of any other way to describe what happened in the closing seconds of Rutgers' women's basketball game against No. 1 Tennessee last night.

I don't want to take anything away from the greatness of Tennessee coach Pat Summitt, but if that's how games are operated down there, it's no wonder she has won so many games.

Here's what I saw:

Rutgers had taken a 59-58 lead with the clock winding down. After a missed Tennessee shot, the Vols' Nicky Anosike grabbed an offensive board and prepared to take a shot. When she grabbed the rebound, there were .2 seconds remaining, and the clock was not moving. At this point, no whistle had been blown.

But with the clock seemingly stopped at .2 seconds, Anosike had time to attempt a shot, which the officials ruled (well after the clock had paused) that there was a foul.

Anosike went to the free throw line and hit two free throws to seal the win.

As I went nuts watching the game at work, Rutgers' coach C. Vivian Stringer -- one of the best coaches in women's basketaball -- was having the same reaction. But she still managed to shake hands with her opponents and act like a professional.

But after the game, she let her feelings be known.

“My assistant coach had picked me up to celebrate; the game was over,” Stringer said. “Then she said, ‘Oh my God, I don’t believe this, they stopped the clock, they stopped the clock.’ That’s why there was time for the foul to be committed.

Lots of people gave credit to Rutgers after the game, but they are missing the greater point -- things like this should not happen in Division I basketball. Someone needs to look into why the clock was stopped, since there was no indication from the officials that it should have been.

According to someone at Tennessee, the clock was controlled by a wireless device the officials wear. I have covered college basketball for six years and I have never even heard of that. If the official did stop the clock, why didn't he or she make a signal to indicate it?

I think Stringer said it best:

“This should not be tolerated.”

Amen.

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1 Comments:

At 7:21 AM , Anonymous Erik said...

You just watch your mouth there, Zach, or you're going to be sucking on Lifebuoy like Ralphie.

If there is one thing this world has no tolerance for, it's irreverent, potty-mouthed journalists.

 

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