NCAA Needs to be Cleaned UP
 3/20/2017 10:47:00 AM      Replies: 13

rk3/20/2017 12:37:47 AM

This tournament, yet again reminds me how badly NCAA basketball needs to be cleaned up by someone with influence--#FBI. 

Right now, we know the selection committee (or whoever they listen to) chooses seeds based on revenue generated from matchups, program wealth and geographic location. We have coaches now that are calling the selection committee out regularly for this, and it's obvious to anyone not in denial. Even worse, it's probable that game outcomes are manipulated for financial gain.

This shouldn't need to be said, but rigged games are good for college competition. We're supposed to be choosing the best teams to play in the tournament, no matter how small their school is, or where they play. And from there, the team that performs better in that game is supposed to win. That's the product ticketholders are told they're buying, and that's the product players/employees are told they work for. You take away the fair competition, there's one major reason for players to stop generating millions of dollars for no zero pay.

Ambiguous Foul Rules

The foul rules are ambiguous. What is a block? What is a charge? What's the difference? What is a shooting foul? What is reach, a held ball? What constitutes a technical foul vs. a warning? Why do home teams perform far better than away teams? These rules have a huge impact on the game. Huge.

Unlike other sports, fouls award points to the opponent while also taking away points from the offending team. Each shotting foul call generally accounts for 3% - 6% of a teams total points scored--eachIn total, free throws often account for 30-50% of a team's total points scored. 

In a close VCU-St Mary's game the other night, St Mary's was awarded 39 foul shots. They made 29 foul shots, accounting for 34% of their total points in that game, and that's not to mention all of the extra possessions they were given from fouls. 

Fouls also take the best players off the court--as we've seen with Cavanaugh in the DePaul, Miami and VCU blowout. In this game, VCU had 3 of their best players foul out. Each foul committed by a player will reduce that player's minutes exponentially, while also changing his approach to the game (as to avoid more fouls). So in effect, you're awarding points to one side while taking away points from another. In this case, half of all points scored in most games are directly attributed to fouls.

36 - 13

We saw that the refs got an obvious goaltending call wrong in the Gonzaga-Northwestern game. That accounted for 2 points right there. When the Northwestern coach questioned it, Gonzaga was given 2 additional shots AND a possession on the technical. Essentially that's 6 points awarded by the officials.

In the Gonzaga - Northwestern game, Gonzaga was given 36 foul shots to Northwestern's 13. The final score was 79-73, a 6-point different. That 6 point difference was the goaltending and technical foul swing, OR the 23 points Gonzaga made on free throws. 

Those are just 2 games that NCAA officials determined, there are many more in this tournament alone. During the season, we saw what Clarence Washington could do to GW. He essentially was the reason GW was relegated to the CBI and not the NIT or even the back of the tournament.

The NCAA needs to clean this up. Or, some bureaucrat or elected official does--the FBI should step on. We're dealing with billions of dollars here, cheating and lying at this level is fraud. It's stealing. 

It is probable that the matchups and the outcomes of games are being manipulated for increased revenue. This is completely unethical and unacceptable in competitive sports, that operate under the guise of fair competion. And it is even worse that it's at the collegiate level where an array of negative spillovers occur. Scholarships, school reputations, and ultimately the costs and the benefits of attending these schools are affected. Jobs are won and lost based on these game outcomes and seeding; player's careers are made and lost. Ticket prices are being affected unfairly. And again, ethically-speaking it's bad. Not a victimless crime.

Manipulating game outcomes is nothing new for sports, and nothing new for this sport particularly. Any sport that is tied to gambling, is a target for fixing. And college basketball is big money in Vegas. While refs and players get payed little/nothing, hundreds of millions are won and lost on the games they work in. Examples of gambling affecting game outcomes in NCAA basketball or related sports: Dixie Classic, ASU point shavingNorthwestern 94-95,  BC point shaving, Tim Donaghy. There's also plenty of information pointing to refs and officials being biased at the least or having less-than-ideal profiles (Pamon in the NCAA). And then there's the culture of NCAA basketball, where rule-breaking is already the norm as we all see coaches every year get caught for paying players in one form or another. And that's *caught*. 

If there is nothing going on and this is just massive coincidence (highly unlikely), there still needs to be more transparency and clearer rules to avoid problems in the future.


marcel3/20/2017 12:39:54 AM


rk3/20/2017 12:40:49 AM

 but rigged games are NOT good for college competition*



the dude3/20/2017 1:20:58 AM

RK, with you on the $$$ focused NCAA mockery of fair competion in general, for seeding and selection 100% with you. That is THE problem, right there.

Gonzaga game:  #1, watch a replay of the missed Goaltending, the entire Northwestern bench except Collins did not see it, zero protest. As for Collins he didn't question it he RAN ONTO the court like a mad man forcing a tech! "Questioned" might be a bit too soft a word! Haha.

As for the foul discrepancy, Northwestern fouled a ton at the end of the game chasing a lead, to stop the clock AND they are a fouling team generally.  Gonzaga does not foul, they have their big men wall up and avoid fouls.  Northwestern is a jump shooting team that doesn't draw fouls, Gonzaga's point I believe led Guards in FTA's this season.  The NCAA wants no part of Gonzaga advancing, not a great example.  VCU ALSO was chasing down a lead and fouled a TON, and we know that their Havoc, 100% trapping style leads to a lot of fouls.  The NCAA surely does not WANT St Marys! St Mary's and Gonzaga? Those are the last two top 11 seeds the NCAA would want to push through the brackets! St Mary's maybe got the bracket's worst seed, along with Wich St!

I actually think the sport is just very hard to officiate, and these guys guess a lot and MISS much.

notta hater3/20/2017 1:34:20 AM

Refs blew the goaltending but Collins blew his top the way that gets you a technical every time. Basically running to the center court circle and doing a cartwheel like a cheerleader during live play can't be missed by any ref.  Ironically, Collins transitions me to say: It was nice watching Duke get hosed by having to play a normally home NCAA first two round game at South Carolina against .... South Carolina! I wonder how it feels to have to play a game like that? 


bigfan3/20/2017 2:21:18 AM

What a terrific question from Notta.

Guess they can't thrive without all of the advantages, including The Tripper still being allowed to play instead of being jailed for assault.

notta hater3/20/2017 2:46:43 AM

i wonder how the Pops & Co. Team felt as they watched that game? Duke at Greensboro in second round with the fans and refs against them. Tonight was only a bit satisfying for me. I need a game where Duke has to come to Baltimore or Verizon to play GW with Refs intimidated by our fans during a "home ncaa game" before I feel vindicated 


tuna can3/20/2017 4:56:26 AM

Ragging on the refs.... Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. NW had 11 steals, most in the second half during their run. Most were fouls that went uncalled. I don't use the word most lightly. You may have a case, but I think Gonzaga feels the pain of that game, as well. I think that the real problem is that the, again as others say, the game is won before the tip off mainly by where the game is played.

If there is an indictment, it would be the performance of the ACC. (or maybe not). I would more likely point to my question about KenPom and his ranking as being totally flawed. A league like the ACC has the entire set of teams sucking at the teet of two or three strong, early season performances. 

The reason that I like this GW team, like last year, is that we are starting to find a path to winning a game. It really starts with how composed you are to enforce your advantages on the other team. It also comes down to shooting. Do you have guys who can drain shots from the arc? Do you have guys who can score down low, draw fouls, grab offensive boards and get extra possessions. Defense, can you get stops. As the British soccer announcers will say, "ask questions." We have a team that will take a good team with 2 scorers and will go into a successful triangle and two. We have the 1-3-1 and we have the man with Yuta on a smaller scorer. We have a young coach who will use the 1-3-1 right up to a key play coming out of a timeout and then go man and get a stop. 

I used to hate games against Temple. It wasn't the coach, it was the players that they had who used to know how to win games. You could tell the moment when we would miss a must have shot and the air in the gym would just rush out. They would come down the court and find a way to get a basket and place the daggar between the shoulder blades. Last year's Colonials were like that, no matter who they were playing. I remember how great it was to watch Florida realize that they just weren't going to come away with a win, with time on the clock. It was like we were asking them "Do you want me to hit you again?" and we would then just hit them again. 

One look at the stats for the year and you see why we lost the games that we did.... lost possessions with all the kids playing turnover ball. Lots of potential, but just not valuing the ball. Early on, we could barely keep any team from scoring from the perimeter. The stats also hide the improvement. Yuta and Patrick each missed 7 games, but we have the pair of freshmen bigs in Toro and Smith who combined for 300 points and 300 boards... also blocks. I still think that an offseason will help Marfo for next year.

We lose TC and Matt.... loads of scoring and leadership, but we return so much else and add a guy who I think will go down as a very good GW ball player. Mazzulla should add more attack to our group of guards and help Yuta and Roland coming off of picks to score. While he isn't a rebounder like Joe, he has more of that game, as well. Mazzulla, at the HS level literally either scores for his team or finds a teammate. The other thing worth noting about Justin is that he is a ball hawk who is somewhat like Pato in that regard. He sees the floor on D and anticipates passes. Just give this group some stability and good things will happen. (IMHO)


tennessee colonial3/20/2017 8:42:56 AM

Right on Tuna!

tennessee colonial3/20/2017 8:51:09 AM

I said this in another post. Should have been here.

"I'm so tired of seeing how refs control all the games in the NCAA's. No consistency as to how they call a game. Before you know if they are going to call a game "tight" or "loose-Let them Play" a star player will have two quick fouls on them. Bizarre how a team gets a lot of foul shots throughout the year suddenly only get 3 or 4. No fouls, all clean blocks by the teams they favor. Pretty sick. Just disgusted by these clowns. " (1)






(1)  NCAA Tourney, 3-19-17

gw 163/20/2017 8:58:24 AM

The URI game yesterday was this spot on. The fouls going against them were not all great and that charge foul on EC Matthews near the end of the game was very suspect:


tjt3/20/2017 10:12:48 AM

Re the URI-Oregon game

Free throw attempts:

Oregon 27



mentzinger3/20/2017 10:23:37 AM

The thing about URI's "thug ball" is that refs could usually call 150 fouls a game against them based on their historic Sumo style. So I'm not sure if your point is made.

Focus instead on how, with :47 left and down 3, URI dribbled the clock down to :20 and started heaving multiple terrible contested shots from behind the arc, instead of going immediately to the hole, getting an easy basket and maybe a foul, and extending the game against a team with suspect FT shooters. Hurley (and the no show from Hassan Martin) lost them this game. Not the refs.

gwmaven3/20/2017 10:47:00 AM

Correct Mentziger.  Horrible last two touches for Rhodey. 

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