Man, I hate crap like this.
Not because it's a call that went against us. It's just a bad call to make in that scenario, because when you make it, you open the door for conspiracy theorists who clog up the normal flow of a basketball discussion.
Was there contact between Ben and Demarcus? Of course. But was it enough to justify a call in that situation, with State clinging to a one-point lead and Duke in the midst of a comeback? In my opinion, no.
The conspiracy theorists are also bolstered by the fact that Nelson hooks Ben on the way to the basket. The whistle toots at that moment in the play, not when Ben makes the most contact with Nelson.
It feels kind of like the traveling call against Corchiani in '89 against Georgetown in the NCAA tournament...a whistle blown by an official who felt because of the bang-bang nature of the play that something must be called, but unsure of what, exactly. And he has about .5 seconds to make a decision. And just like the Georgetown game, the team coming in with the higher prestige gets the benefit of the doubt.
I hate conspiracy theorists in college sports. I don't believe that there is any real call from on top to boost Duke or Carolina through uneven officiating. But gosh, doesn't it just seem like they get all the breaks like this?
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