ACC Cracking Down

GREENSBORO, N.C. – In Clemson's basketball scrimmage last week, guard Shawan Robinson was called for the very obscure infraction of palming (also known as carrying) the basketball. The call by veteran ACC official Mike Wood totally confused the senior.

"I don't even know what I did," Robinson said. "I've been told I carried. Everybody does it. A lot of players do it."

Apparently the NCAA and the ACC have had enough because starting this season, palming/carrying the basketball is going to be called as tightly as it was in the 1960s and 70s.

The new ACC Coordinator of Basketball Officials, John Clougherty, announced Sunday at the annual ACC Operation Basketball that coaches have been warned that such practices with the ball will no longer be tolerated, just as hand-checking was done away with a couple of years ago.

He also added that they're trying to take the streetball style out of the college game. The crackdown on carrying as been dubbed the "Chris Paul Rule." The former Wake Forest guard was notorious for carrying nearly every play.

"I wouldn't put it as much as streetball, but it definitely gives the offense an advantage," Robinson said. "If I can put my hand under the ball and act like I'm going to shoot, of course the guy is going to react out of his stance and you can go by him.

"I'm anxious to see how they're going to call that consistently throughout the year without the games being four or five hours long."

Star Miami guard Guillermo Diaz thinks the new rule is outdated. Times have changed and he believes the old men making the rules should change with them.

"That's our style, that's how we play," he said. "We need to be free sometimes."

The problem, as Georgia Tech coach Paul Hewitt sees it, is that the players don't realize they're doing anything wrong since that's the way they've dribbled their entire basketball lives.

"From a purist's standpoint, I think it's something that has to be addressed," he said. "I think it's a generational thing. I would venture to say that the younger television analysts don't see it as much as some of the guys that have been around the game longer."

Duke shooting guard J.J. Redick is one of the few players that believes carrying should be called on a consistent basis, but only in certain situations.

"If you watch a lot of guys bringing the ball up the court without any pressure on them, they naturally turn the ball over and that's not creating any type of advantage," he said. "Generally, I think if there is some type of advantage gained, you should call it."

Robinson said he's done it so long that he has no idea when he is and isn't committing a infraction. He said he doubts other players have a clue either.

"You'll find out when turnovers in the league go up," he said. "I couldn't tell you how many times I do it a game … definitely more than once. …

"If they're going to call it, they need to call it consistently. When the best player does it, it should be the same as somebody that's not highly as regarded. When you're at the park and you call carrying on somebody, you'll never get the ball. I'm anxious to see how they're going to do that." Top Stories