Michigan Wolverines Basketball: Beilein Talks Ejection ... Izzo Defends Him
ANN ARBOR – John Beilein was the first Big Ten coach to get ejected from a basketball game this year.
Let that one sink in for a minute.
In a league in which Tom Izzo hasn’t been thrown out of a game in 24 years (let that one sink in for a minute), Beilein got tossed after the first half ended an eventual 75-69 loss at Penn State for arguing calls.
“That surprises me,” Izzo told reporters Friday of the ejection. “I feel bad for him, to be honest with you. I think coaches have got to know officials, and officials have got to know coaches.”
Beilein said he’d exchanged several calls and texts with Rick Boyages, the league's associate commissioner, to give his account of what happened. He refused to say what the commissioner said to him, but he clearly made his point.
“It basically was to get an interpretation of how things got out of control so quickly, and why," Beilein said, noting educating officials was just as important as educating coaches. "Just have them make sure they look at the film.
"There are going to be missed calls, but if there are egregious ones, they have to be addressed in a different manner."
Beilein was assessed two technical fouls within 10 seconds after apparently arguing what he thought was a moving screen on Zavier Simpson that led to a PSU basket. The Wolverines trailed 40-27 at the break, and Beilein had to watch the second half from the locker room.
“Probably a guy like John, if he was complaining there was probably a good reason,” Izzo said. “And usually if there’s a good reason an official will take a little more than if there wasn’t a good reason … I’d have to stick up for John that he’s shown over 40 years that’s not how he reacts. So … tough situation.
“I don’t know what impact it had on the game. Maybe the first (technical) was to get his team going, but not the second one.”
Beilein made it clear he wasn’t trying to get thrown out of the game, like some implied.
"It wasn't a Hoosiers 'toss me' deal," he said. "It blew up so fast, that it was over before I could even do anything about it.
“If I receive a technical, I want to know why right away, and probably my mother’s Irish side comes out of me a little bit. I try to avoid those like the plague -- getting a technical. I’ve got to be better than that. I’ve got to be better than officials. I pride myself in doing that, but I wasn’t.”
Beilein said he didn’t expect it to happen again anytime soon, noting it had been since 1981 that he’d been tossed.
“I hope it never happens again,” Beilein said. “I don’t think it ever will. It should never happen again.”
• Talk about this article inside The Fort
• Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes
• Learn more about our print and digital publication, The Wolverine
• Like us on Facebook