Maybe it’s because I never had the traditional college experience (I sacrificed my health and sanity in the military instead; you’re welcome) or perhaps it’s because I’ve never had the desire to keep up with the constant influx of players and teams (how in the hell do y’all keep up with all these student-athletes?), but college sports have never in life been my ministry.
But yesterday I saw something so outlandish, so fucking egregious, so asinine—and so whatever other word escapes me at the moment—that after I finished fighting the air and hurling chairs into the ozone layer, I told myself I was going to write about it. So welcome to my TED Talk.
For those poor unfortunate souls who haven’t been basking in the glory that is March Madness—ummm Jay, that would include you too, sir—on Monday, the UConn Huskies put their streak of 12 consecutive Final Four appearances on the line as they faced off against No. 2-seeded Baylor in the women’s NCAA tournament. Prior to the tournament, the Bears gave the Huskies that work on two separate occasions during the regular season. Some would call that context. I prefer to call it “foreshadowing.”
This time around, UConn would emerge victorious in a 69-67 dogfight that included a double-digit second-half lead that evaporated into thin air and a controversial finish that had me hurling my remote control at the moon.
Down one with eight seconds left, Baylor guard DiJonai Carrington ran a pick-and-roll and dribbled left to attack the basket. That’s when a pair of UConn hoodlums proceeded to manhandle her ass and, in her desperation, Carrington tried to draw the foul to no avail despite getting blatantly bludgeoned in the act of shooting. Why wasn’t a foul called? Great fucking question! Probably because the refs were too busy depositing their hush money into their checking accounts via the Wells Fargo app to pay any attention to the play.
Look at this shit!
Black-on-Black crime is very much a myth, but I want these assailants brought up on felony charges post haste. Black Lives Matter, dammit, and I refuse to stand idly by while bloodthirsty ruffians like Olivia Nelson-Ododa and Aaliyah Edwards maul an innocent Black woman.
Can we get another angle for the non-believers?
HOWWWWWWWW is that not a foul?!!?
Even Stevie Wonder saw that shit!
After the game, Carrington kept it a buck while speaking to reporters.
“I, personally, don’t see it as a controversial call,” she said. “I’ve already seen the replay, and one girl fouled me in my face, one girl fouled me on my arm.”
She then tweeted this immediately after: “You can’t swallow your whistle when the game is on the line.”
Find the lie.
Her coach, Kim Mulkey, came with that smoke, too.
“What did you did you see when DiJonai drove the ball?” a reporter asked. “From where you were standing?”
“What did you see?” Mulkey clapped back.
“I was surprised they didn’t call a foul,” the reporter replied.
“Then write it like that,” Mulkey snapped. “You don’t need a quote from me. I’ve got still shots and video from two angles. One kid hits her in the face and one kid hits her on the elbow.”
Completely aware that he was just gift-wrapped a win, Huskies coach Geno Auriemma steered clear of acknowledging the obvious. Instead, the 67-year-old legend went on the offense and clapped back at LeBron, of all people, for tweeting about the no-call.
“I don’t think LeBron’s ever won a game on a bad call by the other team, by the other officials. Do you think?” he said with a wiry smile. “I probably doubt that in his career he’s ever won a game and decided to give it back because he looked at it and went, ‘That was a foul.’”
He continued while chuckling, “It is what it is.”
As much as I hate to admit it, Auriemma’s got a point. You think Tom Brady loses any sleep over The Tuck Rule saving his ass? Was Sean McVay about to pass up his first Super Bowl berth after Rams defensive back Nickell Robey-Coleman clotheslined Tommylee Lewis? And please don’t get me started on Game 6 of the NBA’s 2002 Western Conference Finals.
It’s an ugly part of the game that I’m sure will haunt Carrington and the rest of the Bears for the rest of their lives, but it’s also the nature of the beast.
Congrats to UConn, I suppose, but those refs might not want to step outside anytime soon.