Source: Refs made right call

ESPNAPI_IMG_NO_ALTEXT_Value

The controversial call in the waning seconds of Saturday's showdown between Syracuse and Duke was so close, at least in real time, that one veteran person in officiating management said he could see it being called either a block or a charge.

"Honest to God, I'm not sure," the official told ESPN.com. "I think if you talked to five people, you'd get three or four different interpretations."

Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim was ejected for arguing the controversial call, ending his first game at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

The ACC on Sunday there will be no further action taken against Boeheim after he ran onto the court. Conference spokesperson Amy Yakola said the officials handled the foul, technicals and ejection on the court Saturday night and there would be nothing further to add.

"I just thought that was the worst call of the year, that's all," Boeheim said Saturday. "I just hate to see the game decided on that call."

ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman spoke to three game officials and there was no consensus opinion on the play, backing up the officiating manager's assertion.

The official, who asked not to be named, said he watched the play in slow motion, frame-by-frame four times, and he at least believes the correct call was made.

The official said that Syracuse's C.J. Fair was not in an upward motion and that Duke's Rodney Hood had established position.

"By the strict interpretation of the rule, it was a player control foul in my opinion," the official said. "The defender was in position with his feet facing his opponent before Fair raised his hand. I think if you watch it, at least frame-by-frame, it was a player-control foul."

He added that the defender does have the right, after establishing legal guarding position, to slide to a side to cover an opponent, which Hood did.

Officiating has been a hot-button issue since the start of the season. The NCAA instituted a new rules package that has been dissected and questioned all year and includes an adjustment to how the block/charge call is interpreted.

Saturday night's call came right out of the amended interpretations, which reads: "A defensive player is not permitted to move into the path of an offensive player once he has started his upward motion with the ball to attempt a field goal or pass. If the defensive player is not in legal guarding position by this time, it is a blocking foul."

The timing of this particular call, with the NCAA tournament right around the corner, will only add to the heightened scrutiny officials are facing.

"It's really your garden variety block-charge call, and fortunately there haven't been too many controversies on those this year," the official said. "Except, naturally, in the final seconds of the most-watched game of the year. Murphy's law."

Information from ESPN.com's Andy Katz and Jeff Goodman contributed to this report.

-- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 22638218. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 22638218. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 22638218.
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...