Wow. What. a. game.
And no, I'm not saying that in the excited way (I haven't gotten to do that much lately).
But I think I developed a inner-ear ringing noise from all the whistles. And it's been a while since I've seen one with that many controversial calls.
Sure, the Gophers got the short end of the stick several times -- which I'll talk about below -- but you really can't put it all on that. Not when the Gophers shot just 23.9 percent for the game and missed seven of their eight final shots from the field (including two layups!) and three of their last four free throws. To be clear, this team has the tendency to shoot itself in the foot, and tonight -- ticky-tack fouls or not -- was another example of that.
Some quick other notes from the game before I brave this nasty weather back to Milwaukee:
- OK -- the big, meaningful fouls would be the charge call that was reversed, changed to a block and resulted in a three-point play by Mike Bruesewitz that tied it in the second and the technical called on Tubby Smith a few minutes later. Let's go through them both.
- Charge/block call: Bruesewitz was originally called for charging Andre Hollins, but after the officials huddled, they changed it. Hollins after the game said: "I can’t wait to see the tape because I’m pretty sure I was outside the charge lane, but they over[turned] it," but the replay made it look like his foot was, indeed, touching the charge lane. Still, Smith was not happy: "You’re going to huddle like that and change a call, are you kidding me? It’s a joke! It really is," he said.
- Technical: Smith was called for heatedly arguing with the officials that Hollins SHOULD have gotten a foul on an attempted three-pointer. It was hard for me to tell whether he was fouled or not -- what do you guys think? I think also by that point, Smith was just generally peeved with the one-sidedness of the calls.
- There were 43 fouls called all together in this one, 24 on the Gophers.
- The Gophers shooting percentage (again, 23.9) is the lowest percentage posted by any Big Ten team in any game this season.
- Andre Hollins, despite his freshman mistakes, had a great game again for the Gophers. It's been a while, unfortunately, since Hollins had a good game IN A WIN. He finished with 18 points, made 10-of-11 from the free-throw line and had three rebounds to go with two turnovers. He made just three shots of 12 attempts from the field, but I like the aggressiveness and the burgeoning confidence.
- Jordan Taylor scored just five points in the first half but exploded in the second half and finished with 22. That's what good players do -- they don't stay down for long.
- With his first four points of the game Ralph Sampson III became the fifth player in Gopher history to tally 1,000 points, 500 rebounds and 150 blocks. The others are Kevin McHale, Randy Breuer, Mychal Thomson and Michael Bauer.
- Julian Welch, who is dealing with a hip pointer, did not play at all tonight.