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Memphis to host the first AAC tournament

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It’s official: the inaugural tournament for the American Athletic Conference — the AAC for short, also known as the ‘old Big East’ — will be held in Memphis at the FedExForum.

The conference’s twitter feed, in a stellar example of how to properly use social media, posted this at Noon ET:

source:
@American_MBB

“We are very excited to have the first American Athletic Conference championship at FedExForum,” commissioner Mike Aresco said in a release that was published, ironically enough, on BigEast.org.  “We received significant interest from many outstanding venues.  FedExForum is an outstanding facility and the Forum, the city of Memphis, the University of Memphis and the local community will combine to create a wonderful inaugural event that our teams, coaches, administrators and fans will embrace and enjoy.”

The games will be played from Wednesday, March 12th, through Saturday, March 15th, with all of the games being broadcast on the ESPN family of networks. The format for the 10 team event will be standard: two first round games on Wednesday, followed by the quarterfinals on Thursday, the semifinals on Friday and the championship on Saturday.

Most had assumed for a couple of weeks that Memphis would end up hosting the event.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

POSTERIZED: Pensacola State’s Jamal Thomas dunks through block attempt, makes coach go nuts

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A solid poster dunk went down in the junior college ranks last night as Pensacola State sophomore Jamal Thomas finished a dunk through a block attempt against Northwest Florida State.

The 6-foot-3 Thomas used his power and momentum to go through the opposing shot blocker and the play made his head coach, Pete Pena, go nuts with an over-exaggerated fist pump. The video is short, but be sure to watch for Pena’s reaction near the logo at the top right of the screen.

VIDEO: Boise State robbed of insane, buzzer-beating win on incorrect timing by officials

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It looked like James Webb III of Boise State had hit the season’s craziest buzzer-beater.

With 0.8 seconds left, he caught an in-bounds pass on the run on the right wing, hoisted up a prayer of a three and watched as it banked it as the buzzer sounded.

It’s pretty fantastic:

And it also clearly left his hands before time expired, but there was a reason for that. According to the officials, the clock (for the road team, mind you) did not start when the ball was caught.

They were right.

Where they were wrong was determining that it took more than a second for Webb to catch and release the shot, meaning that they were wrong to waive off the bucket.

This awesome slo-mo clip of the shot from Matt Stephens of the Coloradoan is all the evidence I need, but if you need more, Sportscenter anchor Scott Van Pelt clocked it at 0.7 seconds:

The game would go to overtime, where Colorado State would go on to win, 97-93.

As you can imagine, Boise State players and coaches were livid with the call.

“I hope it’s not a situation where you get an apology later but don’t get the win. I don’t understand it,” head coach Leon Rice said in a radio interview after the game. “I hope they got it right somehow, some way. I don’t know. It didn’t look right to me, but I’m not the official.”

This comes just four days after officials blew a call in a game between New Mexico and San Diego State that allowed the Aztecs to force overtime and eventually beat the Lobos. (That call may have determined the outcome of the Mountain West regular season title, to boot.)

New Mexico was essentially told, “my bad”, but the league as a result.

And Boise State will probably get the same treatment despite the fact that, if the league determines that the referees botched this call as well, the tame technically was over then.

Will they have the guts to award the Broncos a road win that they earned and deserve?

I doubt it.

UPDATE: Here’s a statement from the officiating crew: