During Wednesday night's UConn-West Virginia game, the Huskies' Alex Oriakhi went to the line and tossed up a free-throw attempt. It was ultimately ruled a jump ball, for reasons you will see here (video via The Dagger):
The officials made the "correct" call, as basketball rules require them to call a jump ball whenever the ball is stuck, and I suppose that the ball was stuck in a manner of speaking. Unfortunately, that is a cop-out, as we must not ignore the philosophical significance of such an occurrence. Meet me after the jump.
PHILOSOPHICAL SCHOOL OF THOUGHT NO. 1: DUALISM.
No action shall be taken, and no jump ball shall be called. A free throw attempt must either be successful or unsuccessful. If it is neither of these, how can it be a free throw? Therefore, since the players are forbidden from crossing the line to knock it down, they must stand there and wait for it to roll off the base of the rim.
This may happen in the event of:
a) an earthquake (not terribly likely in West Virginia, but still possible),
b) a simultaneous ripple of vibration across the arena as a result of coordinated stomping and clapping on the part of the crowd in attendance (really reaching here),
d) civil unrest,
PHILOSOPHICAL SCHOOL OF THOUGHT NO. 2: DISPENSATIONALISM.
- The referee waves his arms and blows the sport dead.
- The crowd is ushered out and the building is immediately repurposed.
- All basketballs are gathered and redistributed to Wal-Marts across the nation, where they will be discreetly mixed in with the end-cap cages of cheap inflatable bouncy balls that they sell for $3.88.
- "Space Jam" will be heavily edited and re-released as a film that focuses on the perspective of the Monstars, a la Grendel.
PHILOSOPHICAL SCHOOL OF THOUGHT NO. 3: FRIENDSHIP.
As outlined in the episode of "The Adventures of Pete & Pete" entitled, "The Trouble With Teddy."
If the ball is stuck (as can be observed at the 1:00 mark here), the players must throw a slumber party and perhaps grow weary of each other's company before discovering the true meaning of friendship.