Thursday night saw another instance of what appears to be a blown call late in a close game.
This happened with under 20 seconds in a one-possession game between Kentucky and Vanderbilt. Kentucky freshman, Nerlens Noel collected a loose ball and floated a shot in the middle of the lane. With Noel’s hand still on the ball and the shot clock at zero, the bucket was counted giving Kentucky a 60-55 lead with 17.3 seconds.
Kerden Johnson hit what would have been the game-tying 3-pointer with 7.6 seconds remaining. Vandy even had a final chance, but the Commodores came up short on the last-second three.
“It’s not a reviewable play, and that needs to be changed probably in the last two minutes of the game,” Stallings said on Friday. “They need to be able to review that. I think they would have preferred to have reviewed it. I’m sure they would have. I guess as it stands now, the only time they can review (a play involving the clock or shot clock expiring) is end of game, or end of half.
According to Jeff Lockridge of The Tennessean, Stallings has yet to watch the replay. Despite being upset about the two-point loss that drops to 6-7 (0-1 SEC), he did recognize the position the refs were in on that play, late in the game.
“I’ve heard from officials that’s one of the more difficult things that they have to do,” said Stallings. “It’s hard for them to keep their eye on the ball and on the clock at the same time, which is kind of understandable.”
Kentucky opened SEC play with a win and have won six of seven.
In a related note, Hall of Fame coach Bob Knight and ESPN analyst, Bob Knight, seemed confused about the game clock and shot clock during the Noel score.
Lockridge added a comment via email from the ESPN public relations department about the incident:
“There was confusion and we could have done a better job explaining the relevant rules. We’ve spoken to all involved in order to have a deeper understanding and better execution next time.”