Iowa and Temple played a spectacular game in Brooklyn, with the Owls battling back from double digits to force overtime before the Hawkeyes won on a buzzer-beating Adam Woodbury tip-in.
Nobody is denying that Woodbury got the ball, tapped it up and in before the shot expired. The cause of controversy is what he did to get to that ball. Woodbury got matched up against Obi Enechionyia, who tried boxing him out. Woodbury got space by pushing Enechionyia away. It doesn't seem particularly obvious on the broadcast angle, but it was easier to see from my vantage point:
IOWA WINS pic.twitter.com/LRSm0hIrgf— Rodger Sherman (@rodger_sherman) March 18, 2016
Temple's players and coaches were careful not to criticize the refereeing:
Nobody in Temple locker room complained about the non-call. Just talked about the pride they had in fighting back. This is one classy bunch.— Reuben Frank (@RoobCSN) March 18, 2016
The closest anybody came was Jaylen Bond, who finished with 15 rebounds. He conceded that "everyone was scrapping" on the play. Iowa coach Fran McCaffery pointed out that with the game clock ticking, he told his players to crash the boards especially hard since there was no need to worry about a defensive possession.
People are going to have two schools of thought on this play: there is the "refs should swallow their whistle late in games" crowd, and there's the "call the game the same the whole way" crew.
Both arguments have some validity. Both camps also probably agree that Woodbury's shove was probably a foul 99 percent of the time. Either way, Iowa gets the win and moves on to face Villanova.