Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Bruce Weber tries (and fails) to not get frustrated over officiating

Kansas State head coach Bruce Weber is pulled back by Kansas State forward Wesley Iwundu (25) while disputing an out-of-bounds ball during the first half on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016 at Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas State head coach Bruce Weber is pulled back by Kansas State forward Wesley Iwundu (25) while disputing an out-of-bounds ball during the first half on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016 at Allen Fieldhouse.


Kansas State coach Bruce Weber told himself before Wednesday’s Sunflower Showdown at Allen Fieldhouse that he was not going to let the calls by the officials get him barking from the sideline.

And, for the most part, the fourth-year K-State coach avoided any outbursts during a 77-59 loss to No. 7 Kansas, which both Weber and a couple of his players said they thought was much closer than the final score indicated.

But Weber’s success biting his tongue on the floor ran out in the fieldhouse media room after the game and the KSU coach on multiple occasions at least mentioned concerns about the officiating.

“I told myself, you come here, you (can’t) get mad,” Weber said. “I tried to keep my poise, and, for 16 minutes, I didn’t say a word to ‘em. But I’ve gotta keep my kids from getting frustrated.”

Weber’s frustration about the officiating — K-State was called for 27 fouls compared to 18 for Kansas (18-4 overall, 6-3 Big 12) — took into account the entire game. But there was a specific stretch that seemed to really set him off.

“I thought there were crucial calls at the end of the (first) half,” Weber said. “The charge/block with (Brian) Rohleder, the block on D.J. (Johnson) and then the out of bounds play. Those are crucial calls.”

And they led to K-State (13-9, 2-7) being down by 10 at halftime after a first half which they controlled most of the way.

A few moments after first mentioning the officiating, a reporter asked Weber about not getting the calls at the end of the first half.

“Really,” the coach interjected. “...Complain about the refs, I could do it all night; but you can’t do anything. You gotta be better than them on the road.”

K-State guard Wesley Iwundu agreed with his coach and said he tried his best to keep his teammates’ minds on the Jayhawks and not the whistles.

“It’s a road game,” Iwundu said. “That’s what’s expected. I just tried to tell guys to keep your head, keep your composure, because we’re not getting calls on the road, especially at Allen Fieldhouse. It’s a tough place to play.”

There were, of course, plenty of factors Weber could point to that tipped the game Kansas’ way. And he did. Most notable among them was the play of KU senior Perry Ellis, who led all scorers with 19 points on 8-of-11 shooting.

“And I thought we did a decent job on him,” Weber lamented. “We want to go to his and (Iowa State forward Georges) Niang’s graduations. Because we’ll be happy when they’re out of the league and we don’t have to face ‘em anymore.”

— See what people were saying about the Sunflower Showdown during’s live coverage.

More news and notes from Kansas vs. Kansas State

By the Numbers: Kansas beats K-State, 77-59

By the Numbers: Kansas beats K-State, 77-59


Brianna Zaleski 6 years, 3 months ago

Well Bruce can go out w Fran and Jon Barry after the game for a drink if he's looking for some sympathy. I've never heard such one-sided commentary from tv personalities. It's getting very old, hearing Fran's anti-KU BS every single game

Dave Miller 6 years, 3 months ago

And I'm getting very, very tired of Mushberger also. ESPN can surely find a better pair than this.

Dirk Medema 6 years, 3 months ago

When there were long stretches of silence during play early in the game, I turned the sound way down. It was nicer that way for me and didn't miss much.

Maybe that's why they brought in Barry. Too bad it wasn't Scooter - We do remember him killing KSU in particular in the regional championship game.

Clara Westphal 6 years, 3 months ago

I had the sound down also. I make my own comments.

What was K-State's bench warning for?

John Strayer 6 years, 3 months ago

Bruce and KSU can complain all they want, but if you're going to play an aggressive defensive game with constant ball pressure, you're going to exposure yourself to additional foul opportunities especially with today's freedom of movement emphasis in the college game. You can't reach, grab and bump ball handlers anymore, period.

And KU isn't aggressive on defense fact seems downright disinterested in that end of the yes KU won't foul as much.

Jay Scott 6 years, 3 months ago

If Weber plays he cards right he can take the Tulsa job when Haith is fired. At least he won't have to do a funeral again.

Bryce Landon 6 years, 3 months ago

From what I've heard from KSU fans, if Bruce Weber posts another losing record, he won't have to face KU anymore. And even if he does, someone else will take Perry Ellis' place on the team to make the Mildcats miserable.

John Pritchett 6 years, 3 months ago

It's interesting to hear this from the perspective of another coach at AFH, because I have suspected that we've been having this issue on the road ourselves. You'd never hear our players or coach voicing that complaint, but I've felt like it's an unspoken reality. Looking at the body language of our players on the road during these losses, they looked defeated, and our players don't feel defeated by opposing players, they feel defeated by unfair officiating, by a sense that the game is beyond your control. I can totally understand that. You feel like you're fighting and scrapping to get back into a game and the officials keep knocking you back down again. Often intensity and effort is punished by foul calls rather than rewarded. KSU felt that way tonight and Weber had the audacity to say so. I think it's a real issue. There has always been a home field advantage in terms of officiating, but this year it's just too extreme. The officiating has been so lopsided in so many games this year, and sure we appreciate it when it's on our side, but on the road it's not going to be on our side. It needs to be consistent enough that a good team can overcome it. The biases of the officials should not be what determines the outcome of a game, and certainly not what decides the Big 12 regular season championionship.

John Strayer 6 years, 3 months ago

Can you point out in the rule book where it states that the two teams have to be equal in fouls? It happens a lot...even on neutral team does foul more than another.

John Randall 6 years, 3 months ago

When a player makes a mistake (or a lot of mistakes), there are remedies. Support from coaches, teammates, home crowds, etc. help get back to a productive attitude.

When an official makes a mistake, he is alone on an island. Like most people, their tendency can be the all-too-human one of hiding their embarrassment and not forgetting, but obsessing, about bad calls. There is smaller chance for officials to get back in equilibrium for the rest of a game -- no one is on their side as far as having a good game or being perfectly non-partisan on every whistle.

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