Tom Izzo, Chris Collins address officiating from foul-heavy second half of MSU-Northwestern
Michigan State and Northwestern squared off in what became a back-and-forth affair throughout the game. In the end, the No. 10 Spartans escaped with a road win after Gabe Brown drained a clutch 3-point field goal with less than a minute to go.
Unfortunately, the dramatic finish was overshadowed a bit by an officiating crew that called 36 fouls in the second half alone. That included 51 free throws as the action was slowed down immensely in the second half. For the game, the 2 sides combined for 49 fouls and 63 free throws.
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After the game, head coaches Tom Izzo and Chris Collins were asked about that performance by the officiating crew. To their credit, neither coach blamed the crew with Izzo saying he “felt bad” for the crew. He also said it is the rules committee that needs to take a look at things.
Collins took a similar angle. He referenced the officials as “a high-level crew” and said they called the game the way officials are being asked to call them.
Either way, it was far from a smooth flow of action in the second half.
“I felt bad for the officials, I think the rules committee needs to look at some things,” says Tom Izzo. “It went both ways.”
— Inside NU (@insidenu) January 2, 2022
Northwestern coach Chris Collins essentially echoes Tom Izzo on the flood of second-half fouls. “That was a high-level crew out there,” Collins said. “They’re calling the game like they’re told to call it. There was a lot of holding, a lot of body-bumping, on both teams.”
— Brian Hamilton (@_Brian_Hamilton) January 2, 2022