Arkansas basketball coach has to be restrained during loss before a team staff member THROWS student reporter’s phone to the floor
Arkansas coach Eric Musselman had to be restrained as his team made an early exit from the Southeastern Conference tournament at the hands of No. 18 Texas A&M.
The Razorbacks suffered a 67-61 loss Friday night in the quarterfinals in which the Aggies rallied from a 13-point deficit.
And Musselman’s frustrations boiled over as he made his anger very clear with Razorbacks assistants having to restrain him a couple times during the defeat.
But tensions peaked after the game when a student journalist had his phone grabbed and thrown to the ground by an Arkansas staffer who was walking behind Musselman as he left the court.
The journalist, Jack Weaver, tweeted that Musselman stormed of court ‘in a rage of f-bombs’ alongside a video of the incident showing the team staff member, identified as the Razorbacks video coordinator Riley Hall by CBS reporter Lee K. Howard, snatching the phone.
Arkansas coach Eric Musselman had to be restrained as his team lost to No. 18 Texas A&M
A student journalist had his phone grabbed and thrown to the floor by an Arkansas staffer (L)
The Kentucky Kernel, the independent student newspaper at the University of Kentucky, put out a statement after the incident that involved its journalist.
‘The Kentucky Kernel is appalled by the actions of the Arkansas men´s basketball program. … no journalist, especially a student journalist, should be subjected to violence for simply doing their job,’ the statement said.
Musselman didn’t mention any outbursts when he met with reporters postgame.
‘If you get down 7-0 in the foul count at any level, whether it´s CYO, college, the NBA, it affects your aggressiveness defensively, especially a team that shoots foul shots percentage-wise as well as Texas A&M has all season long,’ Musselman said.
Wade Taylor scored 18 points to help Texas A&M (24-8) advance for the second straight year to the semifinals, where it will play Vanderbilt, which beat Kentucky.
Arkansas (20-13) now must wait until Sunday´s NCAA Tournament bracket announcement to learn its postseason fate.
Musselman said it was going to take some time to get over this stinging loss.
‘For much of the game we had a lead. I mean, we had a lead for 27 minutes or whatever,’ Musselman said. ‘Obviously we played a very good first half and a poor second half. I give Texas A&M credit for their second-half play.’
The Razorbacks suffered a 67-61 loss Friday in the Southeastern Conference quarterfinals
The Razorbacks coach said it was going to take some time to get over this stinging loss
Coach Buzz Williams said his second-seeded Aggies were not good in the first half and it didn’t help that Taylor was in foul trouble early.
‘We tried to play him offense for defense as best we could,’ Williams said. ‘Nine turnovers is not good. Nine blocked shots is not good. The reason they shot 55% is 18 times we gave them the ball and never got our defense set.’
Henry Coleman III had 16 points and 11 rebounds for Texas A&M. Dennis Dexter and Tyrece Radford each added 11 points.
Nick Smith led Arkansas with 16 points and Makhi Mitchell finished with 15.
Jordan Walsh made a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Razorbacks a 38-25 lead at halftime.
Texas A&M trailed 40-27 early in the second half before surging to take a 46-45 lead on Dexter´s jump shot with 10:26 remaining.
Coleman said none of the Aggies panicked.
‘Our leaders stepped up and said the right things,’ Coleman said. ‘Coach came in and prepared us for the second half. We weren´t really playing Texas A&M basketball in the first half. I thought our ability to get downhill, control the free-throw line and control the glass was a huge key.’
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