Fox Sports is reporting that a physical altercation between Bethune-Cookman and Maryland-Eastern Shore led officials to suspend the women's basketball game with 16:22 left in the second half on Tuesday. Game officials, security and both coaching staffs eventually broke up the melee on the court, sending the teams to their locker rooms. Officially the game was stopped because of unsportsmenlike behavior on both teams.
Bethune-Cookman (12-11, 5-6 MEAC) was leading 32-21 when play was halted.
"I wasn't present when the incident happened," said Bethune-Cookman Athletic Director Lynn Thompson, "but I have reviewed the tapes and believe I understand the situation." He said the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) office was now in charge of the matter. "It's unfortunate that something like this occurred," said Bethune-Cookman coach Vanessa Blair in a statement. "The most important thing now is the safety and welfare of the student-athletes involved."
Can you say, "Embarrassing … " in your best 1980s on-the-blacktop voice? What's the likelihood of these two teams being covered in national news? Slim to none, since they played against each other on Jan. 17, 2011 ,without incident or national coverage. The fact that there was a brawl and the game was suspended has made it national news.
This is not the type of press that sports programs or HBCUs need. If they can't control themselves as young women, then perhaps they might think about how this incident reflects on their institutions specifically and HBCUs in general. Luckily, there's no video of an incident that gives the game of women's basketball and HBCUs a black eye.
Read more at Fox Sports.