Controversial finish: Did officials miss key out-of-bounds call at the end of Ohio State-Illinois?
Ohio State may have benefitted from the referees missing Ohio State guard Duane Washington Jr. possibly stepping out of bounds. It was a crucial non-call in what would be an 87-81 win by No. 21 Ohio State at No. 14 Illinois.
With less than 15 seconds left in the game and Ohio State up by two points, Washington took an inbounds pass and, while controlling the ball and attempting to position his body to turn up court, may have seen his right foot slide out of bounds.
Appears the officials missed this out-of-bounds call that would've given Illinois the ball down two.
Instead, Ohio State holds on for a huge road win.pic.twitter.com/3WipNRIk95
— Heat Check CBB (@HeatCheckCBB) January 16, 2021
Had the call been made – and the Big Ten Network play-by-play crew was split on whether Washington went out of bounds or not – Illinois would have taken over with plenty of time to tie or potentially win the game.
Due to replay rules, officials were not able to take another look.
Moments before, Illinois’ Adam Miller had hit a three-pointer to cut the Ohio State lead to 83-81 and the Illini were in the midst of a 14-6 to close down what was a double-digit lead for the Buckeyes with 2:30 left in the game. Momentum was finally going the way of the home team.
With the result, Ohio State is now on a three-game winning streak and sits at 11-3 (5-3 in the Big Ten). Illinois has now lost two straight and is 9-5 (5-3 in the Big Ten).