flagrant foul, which was just plain dirty. Of course it wasn't called flagrant.
The NCAA Tournament was marked this year by flat out dirty play and a lack of officiating. The talent level of the teams that played in the tournament was mediocre. No player is going to stay more than one year when they see serious injuries occur throughout the year. The NCAA is going to decline continuously, simply because, players are not going to risk career ending injuries to make money for the schools and The NCAA.
I have been a fan of basketball for forty years and I had the honor to help coach young kids. During that time we stressed fair play, safety, and the development of skills and integrity. Basketball is a game. Kids play for the sheer love of the game for years before high school and college. They learn team work and strategy as well as critical thinking skills. It is sad to see such a wonderful sport decline. The injury to Da'shaun Butler was inevitable. When a team gets a pass on the brutality of it's tactics, it is bound to end with a catastrophic injury. It was just sad that it happened to a probable NBA first round draft pick, so that a team could win a tournament, no matter how important.
I find it terribly sad that 18 year old kids are at such risk. These kids are student athletes and it seems that some coaches are ignorant of that. Jim Boeheim knew that the odds against winning the tournament had declined with Onaouku's injury, but he held him out to his credit, to protect him from further injury. Commentators concentrated on the fact that the team had lost a key player instead of emphasizing the concern that Boeheim had for his player. More coaches should take that kind of attitude toward their players.
The kids want playng time and many times that leads them to play with injuries. It is up to the coach to put the players health before their win loss record.
I am not angry. Rather, deeply saddened by the indifference that exist toward their health in the distant future.
Coach K is driven to win and his lack of concern for the health of all the players was captured in the tape of Da' Shaun Butler writhing in agony on the floor Saturday night. Letting his players loose game after game to physically pound on opposing teams with no regard to safety is a sad example of all that is bad about college basketball and the low that officiating has hit. Without the complicity of the officials that kind of environment would not exist.