Thursday, February 1, 2007

Clemson may get extra time from NCAA committee

The timing error from Clemson’s 68-66 loss on Jan. 25 at Duke will be taken into consideration by the Division I men’s basketball committee during the NCAA tournament selection process.

“It becomes one of many factors that would be discussed at that point in time that Clemson is brought up for discussion,” Craig Littlepage, the committee chair, said Wednesday.

Replays of the game showed that officials failed to promptly start the clock when Clemson’s Vernon Hamilton stole a Josh McRoberts pass. ESPN’s video analysis estimated that 2.4 seconds should have been put on the clock after Hamilton’s tying 3-pointers.

Instead, Duke had 4.4 seconds - just enough time for Jon Scheyer to set up Dave McClure for a winning lay-in at the buzzer. ACC officiating coordinator John Clougherty later acknowledged that a timing error had occurred.

Littlepage, the Virginia athletics director, said there’s no way to tell whether Duke could have set up a play to win in 2.4 seconds, or whether Clemson would have won if the game went to overtime.

“We just don’t know what would have happened,” he said.

But when Clemson is discussed by the selection committee, the circumstances of what could have been a win over a top-10 team on the road will be brought to everyone’s attention. -- Ken Tysiac