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#pounditWednesday, October 4, 2023

Controversial ejection nearly costs North Carolina against Baylor

Brady Manek ejection

The North Carolina Tar Heels prevailed in overtime of Saturday’s NCAA Tournament game against Baylor, but a controversial officiating decision nearly cost them.

With the Tar Heels ahead by 25 and roughly 10 minutes left, North Carolina star Brady Manek was ejected for what was deemed a flagrant 2 foul on replay. Manek threw an elbow while boxing out, but many felt that the flagrant 2 and ejection were far too harsh in the context of the play considering Baylor’s Jeremy Sochan appeared to be the agitator.

The Tar Heels went into freefall after the ejection. Part of that seemed to be because the officials began calling the game more tightly, with Baylor benefiting from more than one foul call. Baylor made up a 25-point deficit and took the game to overtime, but ultimately ran out of gas and lost 93-86.

Manek had been on the way to a huge game, with 26 points in 27 minutes. His absence certainly hurt the Tar Heels, but he’ll be ready to go in the Sweet 16 after his teammates hung on for him.


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