Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Possible Human Error Caused Clock Malfunction

According to, there was possible human error which may have caused the clock malfunction in last night's Rutgers / Tennessee woman's basketball game.

Precision Time Systems inventor and president Michael Costabile said there is plenty of room for human error in running the game clock. At issue is whether Rutgers' Kia Vaughn fouled Nicky Anosike before time expired.

The Precision Time device, which keeps time for all NBA games and many at the college level, uses small microphones attached to the referees' whistles that communicate wirelessly to devices worn on the referees' belts. The devices start and stop the game clock. When the device picks up sound from the whistle, the clock stops.

Costabile said because the clock seemed to pause before reaching zero indicates to him that either an official or the timekeeper may have stopped the clock, anticipating Anosike would be fouled, and then restarted it when that wasn't immediately the case.

It's unfortunate the officials were put in this situation. I heard Chris Myers talking about this today on his radio show, and they were asking why the officials didn't review the play, and rule the game was over. Well, according to this report:

Officials replayed the video and ruled the foul came just before the buzzer. Anosike stepped up and hit the two free throws to take the victory.

I have to ask. If a whistle or clock operator stopped the clock inadvertantly - they must have caught their mistake and quickly restarted it - just enough time to get the foul in. That has conspiracy written all over it. My impression is if it's a home game - and the home court's clock fails like that - they should not have been rewarded in that case. The officials should have reviewed it more closely and ruled the game over. But, either way - tough position for those officials to be in at that point in time.

Just in case you haven't seen it. Here's the video:


Ishy said...

I agree with you on this. Total conspiracy. the clock never should have stopped. there was no foul until the shot took place, and the clock should have run out well before the shot took place. another case of the refs trying to save their jobs. i hope the NCAA reviews this game and reprimands the refs. there is no room for this in college basketball. one loss does not a season make, but it smells very fishy being at home against another ranked opponent.

Anonymous said...

the game was over no foul. that looks extermly fishy. how does the clock stop with .02 left for maybe a full second b4 starting agian. 1 word "conspiracy" some1 needs to get blamed. NCAA needs to do something

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