I never thought I would write this, but I wish Tim Higgins and Jim Burr could be on the officiating crew for the final game of the CBI Championship. No. I’m not joking. I’ll get to the recap a little later. These morons deserve their own post.
I realize many of you didn’t see the game last night. Let’s jump ahead to the final seconds. Pitt has a 6-point lead after Lamar Patterson hit both free throws. There are under 15 seconds left. Washington State can’t mess around, despite their offense being slower than Pitt’s. They have to get a quick bucket. Pitt is not letting them. It is already under 10 seconds, so they do what they can to free a shooter. Forward Abe Lodwick literally plows through John Johnson in an attempt — I suppose — to provide a screen for Reggie Moore. Lodwick for extra emphasis puts a forearm into Johnson’s jaw. Johnson as he is being hit has his arms go around Lodwick. Legs tangling and Lodwick falls on top of Johnson. The whistle blows….
Intentional foul on John Johnson.
Somehow the ref managed not to see Lodwick steamroll Johnson, and only saw Johnson “take down” Lodwick.
Courtesy of PantherSports, here is the video.
Sadly, while that was probably the worst, most egregious call it was not atypical. The refs called a total of 39 fouls in the 40 minute game. 26 fouls were called just in the second half.
Sadly, the refs probably feel that they called a fair game since Pitt was whistled for 20 and WSU for 19. The calls completely disrupted the game. The frustrating thing was watching them call every defensive stand by Pitt in the paint a block. That was how Washington State got back into the game. They just drove straight into Pitt players in the paint and got the call. At one point, Dante Taylor was called for a block. He was standing straight up, arms up. Reggie Moore drove, jumped right at the chest, bounced off and got the call.
The HDNet playcalling crew looked at the replay and even they were befuddled by these calls. Finally Keno Davis utters the statement, “At some point you just have to fall down.” Yes, it was so bad that the color commentary advocated flopping by the big men.
And to answer the question of where they got these guys. Donnie Eppley (R), Brian Dorsey, Ron Tyburski are mainly NEC and MAAC refs. All three have a whistle-happy history of averaging around 37 fouls called per game.