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Florida State Screwed in Loss to Virginia Tech (Video)

We’ve been through this issue several times before and we’ll continue to hammer the point until people recognizes the sense it makes. Florida State got screwed over when a shot by Derwin Kitchen at the buzzer was overturned by the referees, giving the ACC tournament game to Virginia Tech. Check out the video:

Erick Green had just hit the go-ahead jumper for Virginia Tech giving them a 52-51 lead, so Virginia Tech went from elation to heart break and then back to elation in the span of two minutes. What concerns me is that a shot that clearly was taken at the buzzer and went in was waved off. Why is that the case? Look how close things were. In the pic below, the ball was out of Kitchen’s hand when time expired:

And in this zoomed-in angle, the ball was out as well:

If Kitchen didn’t get his shot off in time, it was by a millisecond. And you know what? The bottom line is that to the naked eye he got the shot off in time and that’s what should count. Since when did sports become about millisecond breakdowns on video replay and not about the actual game?

And here’s the other point that I’ve stressed so many times before. The clock operators for games do such a poor job managing starts and stops, all it takes is for them to start it a millisecond too early on a possession and it would result in Kitchen’s shot being after the buzzer. I will continue to repeat the point: when it comes to last-second shots, if it passes the eyeball test it should count. Science is imperfect, sports are fun — don’t spoil the moment with a microsecond reading that can already be flawed.


Around The Web

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ON2Q3PFLNA6D7X45KFWMIQOTVY Eric Z

    Pretty clear that the shot wasn’t off before hitting 0.0.

  • http://larrybrownsports.com Larry Brown

    Yeah, I recognize that it was by a split second, but like I said clock operators are so off with it, it shouldn’t be denied. Eyeball test for me says that he made it

  • http://twitter.com/IntheOT Chad Margulius

    It was quite clear the buzzer went after the ball was released. Whether or not it did after the clock had expired is another debate. My question is why is the buzzer so out of sync with the clock?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ryan-Stevens/187600054 Ryan Stevens

    to be honest, your pictures look like proof to me that the shot should NOT have counted. the top picture was taken a couple frames before the bottom picture. in the top picture, his shooting hand is extended back at like a 45 degree angle. in the bottom picture, his hand is almost vertical (and it actually looks like he might still have a finger or 2 on the ball). to get from where he was in the top picture to where he is in the bottom picture, he still had to be in contact with the ball. and since the clock was at 0.0, no good!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Peter-Toney/1236724652 Peter Toney

    Since the rules say that the refs go to the video when the shot is that close to expiration of time when that rule was instituted was when the game went to “millisecond breakdowns” and that is the “actual game.” You either want to use the technology or you don’t. What I have found is that people whose teams most recently benefitted from the technology like it, people whose teams were hurt by the technology rant against how it ruins the game.

  • Anonymous

    FSU got screwed, but it wasn’t from the shot clock. They screwed themselves with all the turnovers they had in the second half and wasting a ten point lead. Oh yeah, a ten point lead was huge in this low scoring game. FSU played poorly and let a a struggling Tech team come back on them. As far as the shot getting off on time, I have yet to see any evidence that it did or did not get off on time. Not one camera shot was able to get in close enough to see if that ball was actually out of his hand. Would we be able to see an inch or less from a camera that is still 50 feet away? Doubtful. Then there is the whole conspiracy about letting Tech have the win so the ACC could possibly have another team in the NCAA tournament. Did you see how many times FSU got to the free throw line? Five times, while Tech got there over twenty. Almost every blocking foul was called an offensive foul against FSU while very few were called blocks against Tech. The rule states that if the defenders feet are still moving that it is a foul against the defense, not the offense. Guess what, in most of these fouls the defenders feet were still moving. I recall at least five instances of FSU being charged with an offensive foul. I believe the referees were told ahead of time to make it difficult for FSU to win. This would increase Tech’s chances of winning since they are a bubble team and FSU seems to already have secured a spot in the NCAA. Ultimately though, it was all those turnovers. BTW, I am an FSU fan, a frustrated one.

  • Anonymous

    watch the nba change the rules so that if you’re simply in the air when the buzzzer goes off it’s good

  • http://larrybrownsports.com Larry Brown

    That’s how the rule should be!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Freelyn-Stanley/1400910918 Freelyn Stanley

    Larry Brown just likes to stir up controvery by saying Florida State got screwed when he was clearly not at the game. Everyone should chip in some money to but him a set of TV glasses so he can get it right next time. After all, I think 3 officials got it right vs 1 sports writer.
    Freelyn Stanley

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-Kinn/1419621812 John Kinn
  • http://www.facebook.com/donald.ridenhour2 Don Ridenhour

    The comment about clock operators can go either way. Maybe there was a time during the game it wasn’t started soon enough, have you thought about that? No matter who won or lost it was a great game and there had to be a loser. Florida State had plenty of opportunities to put the game away and didn’t. Va Tech has played most of the year with only 8 scholarship players and throughout the ACC Tourney they only played 6. If a team with a full compliment of players cannot beat a team with only 6 worn out players they should be ashamed of themselves, not crying!

  • http://www.facebook.com/donald.ridenhour2 Don Ridenhour

    Also any frame after time had expired could be used in those still shots so they are not definitive. The only way to tell is to look at it in frame by frame motion until the clock shows zero.