Was Cooney Fouled at the end of Regulation?

We take a look at the final sequence of regulation that sent the game into overtime.

Syracuse fell to Villanova in overtime on Saturday in somewhat controversial fashion. The Orange were clinging to a five point lead with seconds remaining in regulation when ‘Nova hit a three to cut the lead to just two points.

On the ensuing inbounds play, Michael Gbinije threw a pass to Rakeem Christmas. The ball was deflected, Villanova stole it, and ended up with a game tying layup that sent the game into overtime.

Orange fans were irate, believing guard Trevor Cooney was fouled before the pass was thrown. The foul was not called, however, leading to the aforementioned scramble. Was Cooney fouled? CuseNation.com rewatched the play and took some screen shots to examine.

As you can see, as Gbinije is looking to inbound the basketball, Cooney is being guarded by Ryan Arcidiacono. As Cooney tries to break towards Gbinije, Arcidiacono puts his arms around Cooney, appearing to infringe on his ability to move.

As the rest of the play progresses, Arcidiacono appears to use his hands and arms to wrap up Cooney, causing him to stumble to the ground.

Beyond that, in what was missed by most, may have the more egregious missed call. After Gbinije throws it into Christmas and the ball is deflected, Chris McCullough appears to be in a good position to snatch the ball and keep possession.

However, he seems to struggle to take the final step towards the ball. Why? Let’s take a look at the pictures.

McCullough’s arm is clearly locked and pulled by the Villanova defender. That results in McCullough not being able to grab the ball and instead falling backwards. Ryan Arcidacano then ends up with the ball and finds Jayvaughn Pinkston for a game tying layup that sent the game into overtime.

Watching it live, it certainly appeared both were clear fouls on Villanova. After rewatching, and slowing it down as well as looking at the pictures, I came to the same conclusion. Brutal way for Syracuse to lose.

What do you think? Did the officials miss two clear foul calls at the end of regulation? Or did the officials properly let them play? Click the forum link below to discuss.

Cuse Nation Top Stories