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UNC Asheville screwed by refs in final minutes against Syracuse

Syracuse almost became the first No. 1 seed ever to lose to a No. 16 seed in the NCAA Tournament, but they avoided the upset thanks to some help from the referees.

Aside from a controversial goaltending call, the refs called a lane violation on UNC Asheville following Scoop Jardine’s miss on the first of a one-and-one. Because of the violation, Jardine got to attempt his free throw again and made both, turning a four-point game into a six-point lead 64-58 lead for Syracuse with a minute and a half left in the game. While the call was technically correct (a player not on a legal lane space cannot cross the free throw line until the ball hits the rim), it was a petty call that is hardly made.

Additionally, a ball went out of bounds off Syracuse in the final minute, but it was called off Asheville. Asheville was down by three points when the blown call occurred:

It’s hard enough for a 16 seed to beat a No. 1 seed, but it’s even more difficult when the refs are hurting you with bad calls.

UPDATE: The referee in question, Ed Corbett, is a Big East ref who frequently officiates Syracuse games.

Screencap via SB Nation



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  • Anonymous

    “a player not on a legal lane space cannot cross the free throw line until the ball hits the rim), it was a petty call that is hardly made.”

    1)  That’s not what the rule is.  He can’t cross the 3 point line, nor the free throw line extended until the ball hits the rim, flange, or backboard.  So in this play the guy had to remain all the way behind the 3 point line until the ball hit the rim.  He was about 20 feet from where he should have been.  It could not have been more obvious to someone who understands the rules.

    2)  The call is hardly made because most players aren’t stupid enough to do this.  Can you provide reference to situations where this rule was broken yet no violation was called?