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Sports On My Planet: The Zebra’s Dilemma

Thursday, April 06, 2017 - Updated: 11:14 AM
Galen Shelton
This won’t take long.
After seeing so many good, and a few great, games in the run-up to the title game Monday night, I was very disappointed in the final product. All the hype, all the fanfare and about five or six minutes of good basketball . . . what a letdown.  
The NCAA Final Four, which was the two games on Saturday, was exponentially better.  
The Gonzaga team or the South Carolina team that played on Saturday were both better than the teams I saw Monday night. The ‘Zags couldn’t shoot, didn’t defend nearly as well as they did on Saturday and looked kind of lost but so did North Carolina until the last five or six minutes.
I’ll freely admit that I was no Gonzaga fan, but after the game they played against South Carolina, I really thought they were “the one.”
Now to the crux of the matter. The reason the title game stunk was the officiating. Plain and simple. The zebras gave no lee-way to the players, especially the “bigs” and the game suffered.
If you watched much of the tournament, you saw some really weak officiating — a bone to Big Blue Nation — but none as confusing as the final game.
I watched UNC’s Kennedy Meeks bulldoze a couple of Ducks out of bounds on the last play of the Oregon game and that was called offensive rebounding prowess. In the last game it was called a foul.
Gonzaga’s terrific freshman post man Zach Collins was whistled for two really weak illegal screens, and it seemed if you were taller than 6’8” you automatically had two fouls before the game started.
Don’t ask me how to rectify it, but it seems like when you have five or six giants on the floor at the same time you have to show some common sense.
I would be OK with the refs telling the players that we’re going to call things close at first and if “you behave yourselves,” we’ll loosen up as the game goes on.
I just felt bad seeing so many guys on the bench for so long with so much at stake.

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