Sunday, March 20, 2011

Let Them Play?

I still think it was a shitty call. Let me rephrase, not so much that the call was wrong (a hack across the arm is obviously a foul) but the immensity of the moment dictates a little restraint by the official, don't you think? The last 10 seconds of last night's Pitt vs Butler game have already been dissected and analyzed to death and the overwhelming consensus seems to be that the right call was made. The strangest part about the whole thing is that there seems to be no controversy at all. Everyone agrees on this. Well, I'm not one to be contrary for the hell of it, but I think the refs should have let this one go.

I understand basketball purists will tell you that it was a stupid play by the kid for Pitt (and it was) and that a foul is a foul no matter the time in the game, but I think there should be some kind of discretion used when making a season deciding call. Namely, is this a foul that will impact the outcome of the game? I say no way.

Unlike the first dumb foul that preceded this dumb foul in which Pitt's Gilbert Brown was knocked off course on his way to a makeable three point attempt, had this foul not been called, nothing different would have happened in 1.4 seconds. Even if Matt Howard had rebounded the ball and was untouched, he wasn't going to throw in a game winner from the opposite end of the court. Nasir Robinson's foul didn't even keep Howard from corralling the rebound. At that point, the officials should swallow their whistles and let the teams battle it out in overtime to decide one of the biggest games of their lives.

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