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Wednesday, July 17, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

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And, to no one’s surprise, the decision stands

A GRIP ON SPORTS • Doing the right thing is hard. So it’s not surprising when college conferences don’t have the stomach for it. Read on.

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• Real quickly, and mainly because we didn’t want to leave you hanging, the Mountain West Conference admitted yesterday the timing system used by the officials in the Boise State/Colorado State game was flawed and James Webb III’s shot at the end of overtime should have counted. However, citing a rule that doesn’t seem to fit, the conference also said Friday afternoon it would not change the result. The MWC statement cited the NCAA basketball rule 5, section 5 to justify not making a change. That rule reads, in its entirety: “The NCAA Men’s Basketball Rules Committee does not recognize or allow protests.” OK, I’m not the smartest guy in the world but I don’t see any combination of any of these words: Conferences are not allowed to correct an egregious error in which a faulty replay system caused the wrong team to win. There is a rule within the NCAA handbook that states when the referee declares that the game is ended, the score is final, but that declaration does not spell out how a referee actually does that. I have witnessed a referee signal the game is final before but it not be, due to an ensuing replay review, so there is that. Let’s recap: The game is tied. There is .8 seconds remaining. Webb takes a pass, shoots and the ball goes in. The horn and light on the basket light up while the ball is halfway to the hoop. The shot is called good. The referees, as they are supposed to, review it to make sure. The clock on the video screen runs twice as fast as it should, so it seems as if Webb took 1.2 or 1.3 seconds to get the shot off. No one notices this flaw. So the shot is waved off. CSU wins in double overtime. If the shot was ruled good, as it should have been, the time has expired. Colorado State had no more time to score. This should have been fixed. As should the timing system.

• Before we get to the links, we have to mention Jim Allen has done an in-depth series focused upon the Australian basketball players who have gravitated to the Inland Northwest the past few years. There is a story for each of our universities, mainly because there is an Australian player – or two or three – at each school.

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• WSU: Jacob Thorpe returned to the blog yesterday with this look back at the double-overtime Colorado defeat. ... They haven’t forgotten about Ernie Kent in Eugene. ... UCLA had to deal with Arizona and foul trouble – now that’s surprising – in Tucson last night. ... Arizona State upset USC. ... UCLA pulled away in the second half and handed the WSU women their seventh consecutive loss. ... It’s Saturday, so we have the mailbag from ESPN.com’s Pac-12 blog. ... Klay Thompson as Robin? ... Jim’s Australian story: Louise Brown.

• Gonzaga: Today may be Gonzaga’s last, best chance to make a statement to the NCAA selection committee. A road win at SMU would help the Zags’ at-large chances considerably. Jim Meehan has an advance. ... He also has a look back at the win over Portland. ... Jim Allen has a blog post in advance of the GU women’s home game with Portland this afternoon. ... BYU’s men will try to sweep a road weekend for the first time in WCC play when they face Santa Clara this afternoon. ... Jim’s Australian story: Georgia Stirton.

• EWU: Besides the Australian series, Jim Allen also has a look back at the win over North Dakota. ... Weber State has the perfect coach, according to this column. ... Jim’s Australian story: Venky Jois.

• Idaho: Jim’s Australian story: Geraldine McCorkell.

• Whitworth: George Valle had a good game as Whitworth defeated George Fox, 83-67. Tom Clouse has the story. ... Jim’s Australian story: Christian Jurlina.

• Chiefs: Spokane fell in a shootout at Kootenay, 3-2. ... Host Portland edged Everett 3-2. ... Tri-City, outside the playoffs now, didn’t help itself last night with a 5-3 loss in Lethbridge.

• Preps: The GSL 4A district basketball playoffs finished last night with Gonzaga Prep’s boys defeating Central Valley – Mike Vlahovich has that story – and CV’s girls getting past Lewis and Clark – Greg Lee was there. ... We also have a 3A district roundup and a boys basketball roundup.

• Seahawks: Covering Marshawn Lynch was not as bad as it might have seemed to the outside world. ... Would Matt Forte be a good fit to replace Lynch?

• Mariners: The M’s have a big question at second base. Not who will play there but how much – and well – Robinson Cano can play. ... What is the M’s best-case scenario? ... We have three story lines to watch as spring training approaches.

• Sounders: Arizona is so last week. Now the Sounders are in Southern California. ... Real Salt Lake could use a bit more star power.

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• It’s Saturday, right? The weekend awaits. And a big weekend it is, if you have someone special to spend Sunday with. Which is always the case here. Until later ...




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Vince Grippi
Vince Grippi is a freelance local sports blogger for spokesman.com. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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