Phillips Contacting the ACC

It is one thing to lose fair and square to North Carolina, but it's completely another to feel as though you've be jobbed by the officials. That's why those at Clemson aren't taking Sunday's defeat very well and why calls to ACC headquarters are being made.

At issue are the 31 personal fouls called on the Tigers as opposed to the 14 called on North Carolina. As a result, the Tar Heels attempted 36 free throws to Clemson's seven and North Carolina won 103-93 in double overtime.

Also a grievance is the indisputable fact that the Tar Heels went a period of 12:21 without having a foul called against them in the first half. Moreover, during that same time period, 10 straight fouls were called on Clemson, which was up by a significant margin the entire time.

That played a huge factor in North Carolina not being blown out early and allowed the Tar Heels to stay within striking distance.

One school official said he doesn't believe he's ever seen such a discrepancy like that, especially in the first half of play.

While Tigers coach Oliver Purnell isn't expected to file a formal complaint, CUTigers.com has learned that Clemson athletics director Terry Don Phillips is crying foul and will speak to the ACC's head of officiating, John Clougherty, as a result.

"Conference policy does not allow us to comment publicly concerning officiating," Phillips said. "But we will visit with the conference about yesterday's game."

Officials at Clemson are aware that because the Tigers settled on taking a lot of jump shots that fouls weren't going to be called as much.

However, they feel that it still doesn't account for what they view as non calls, particularly against North Carolina forward Tyler Hansbrough on defense and while going for rebounds.

There were several instances in which Hansbrough was his typical bull-in-a-china-shop self, but nary a whistle was blown.

Some may argue that not having fouls called was a good thing for Clemson because of its horrendous free throw shooting, but Tiger officials point out that had some of those fouls been called, Hansbrough wouldn't have played nearly as much because he would have been on the bench sitting in foul trouble.

Also, even if Clemson had been sent to the free throw line, odds are they would have made some of their shots, even if it was at a 30 percent clip, which means more points, nonetheless.

As it was, the Tigers got nothing.

Additionally, they believe that the excessive fouls led to three players – K.C. Rivers, Trevor Booker and Demontez Stitt – being strapped with four fouls each, which in turn prevented them from being aggressive on defense in the final three minutes of regulation, which is when the Tar Heels made their comeback.

Not much, if anything is expected to happen to the officiating crew, but by complaining about it, those at Clemson hope that future ACC officiating crews will be more just and non-discriminatory with their calls.

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