LSU beat Kentucky tonight with a buzzer-beating tip-in by Kavell Bigby-Williams that was clearly basket interference, but the refs weren’t allowed to review it.
According to NCAA rules (page 100), officials are not allowed to use instant replay for “judgement calls” such as basket interference or goaltending, meaning that even though Bigby-Williams clearly touched the ball above the cylinder, it didn’t matter. Somehow, in this situation, the only thing that did matter was that the ball dropped through the cylinder before time expired.
As you might expect, John Calipari was not happy.
“No, it’s another one — do you remember, we lost in the Final Four when there was a shot clock violation and they said it was not reviewable and then they changed the rule to say why would you want to lose a game on a shot clock violation that’s easy to go check? Well this one is easy to go check, too. Just go check it. Why would that not be reviewable. We’re like Wilt Chamberlain. We change rules. I don’t know.”
Before you get out the pitchforks, as Rob Dauster points out, EJ Montgomery also had a goaltend on that play:
Everyone is talking about the tip-in, but this was a pretty clear goaltend by E.J. Montgomery on the initial shot. The refs missed the call against Kavell Bigby-Williams, but that tip-in shouldn't have mattered if they had seen Montgomery's hand go through the rim. pic.twitter.com/AJwTWrs2s2
— Rob Dauster (@RobDauster) February 13, 2019
“It came down to that last play,” Cal said. “You have to judge it yourself, I guess. I haven’t looked at it. I know, I looked at it when it happened, but I haven’t looked at it.”
Correction: According to Seth Greenberg, that wasn’t goaltending by EJ Montgomery because the ball had not hit the rim yet. So, ultimately, we still got screwed by a dumb rule…although Kentucky shouldn’t have let the game get to that point in the first place.