Between the MLB lockout, the end of the NFL season, and the NBA All-Star break, I am in complete disarray as a sports fan. Sure, my Habs stomped the Leafs on Monday, as a reminder of when we ridiculed them in last year’s playoffs, but my appetite for live sports can’t be satisfied by watching last year’s North Division champs beat up on a team while they’re already down. Imagine trying to win a game with your backup goalie in net?
So with March around the corner, as is the madness that comes with it, I’m paying more attention to college basketball, and let me tell you I can’t get enough of this sport. With over 350 schools with Division I basketball programs there’s always some drama going on. It feels like every night there’s an epic buzzer beater or some student section storming the court after a big win. You have coaches who celebrate a win over the top team in the country by joining in on the court storm, taking his shirt off (while wearing a sling) and dancing around at halfcourt like he’s about to take the Natty Light train back Sigma Chi Apple Pi. The Muss buss is classic.
Eric Musselman is living his best life… shirtless! pic.twitter.com/UZmV79Idwr
— Nick Petraccione (@NickPetraccione) February 9, 2022
Tuesday gave us another wild moment in college basketball in the University of Connecticut vs. Villanova game, and yet another reason why no one likes the guys who dress like zebras. It all starts with UConn head coach Danny Hurley, who gets issued a technical foul for lippin off to the one of the refs for a missed call.
After one of Hurley’s players calms him down he seems to take notice of the boos raining down from his home crowd, protesting the ref show that led to the Huskies’ head coach getting T’d up. Hurley sees this reaction and, seeking an opportunity to flip the momentum, gestures to the fans to get up and get loud. You’ve gotta be provocative to get the people going.
The softest ejection these eyes have ever seen. I’m just glad the refs got their shine though. We always watch the biggest game for it pic.twitter.com/AilLZHd6GB
— Bobby Reagan (@BarstoolReags) February 23, 2022
Yet as Hurley is waving his hands to pump up the crowd, he gets ANOTHER tech called against him, which is his second and as a result he gets ejected. It’s a hilarious sequence of events that also might be the lousiest ejections I’ve ever seen.
What I don’t understand is how Hurley’s attempt to to fire up the fans earns him an ejection on the grounds of the ref giving him another techn, effectively ending his night in the first half. Sure, he was being mouthy, which can justify giving him the first tech, but giving officials an earful is practically a job requirement for basketball coaches. But you’re telling me he earned that second tech just from turning to the bleachers and raising his arms? Unfathomable.
That is one of the worst calls I have ever seen in my life.
A miscarriage of justice in Hartford.
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) February 23, 2022
The hilarious clip of Hurley getting the boot for pumping up his Huskies during a play stoppage blew up on Twitter, and it’s one of the worst ref shows I’ve seen in a minute. Just another example of an ego-driven official who takes offence to something, which doesn’t even have to do with him, and makes it all about himself. This is right up there with Joey Crawford’s all-time blocking call where he skips across the hardwood like a first-grader.
As a baseball fan the ‘look at me’ call that revved up the Huskies —and might have been the difference-maker in their 71-69 win over the Wildcats— was a touching tribute to Cowboy Joe West, who recently retired from his post as the most famous Major League Baseball umpire after nearly 50 years in the game. Take a minute to look up ‘Joe West’ on YouTube and you’ll be amazed at what you find. And just like Crawford and Cowboy Joe, this UConn/Nova ref seems to think people are there to see him rather than the game.