The Wisconsin Badgers beat Maryland 70-57 on Saturday night and Greg Gard decided not to make Diamond Stone’s actions any more of an issue than they already were. But the Badger coach certainly had a right to because the Big Ten officiating crew assigned to the game screwed up.
When Stone shoved Vitto Brown’s head hard into the court at Maryland’s Xfinity Center, that was only one legitimate conclusion that should have been drawn. The officials should have ruled a Flagrant 2 and an ejection of Diamond Stone.
Instead, referee D.J. Carstensen told a pool reporter after the game that it was a Flagrant 1. Plus, he issued a technical foul on Wisconsin’s Charlie Thomas for doing nothing more than coming to the aid of his teammate without any physical contact.
The fact that both teams were issued free throws after that incident was a clearly the wrong conclusion, which seemed like such a simple solution.
D.J. Carstensen is a veteran official with plenty of experience. Yet he was afraid to pull the trigger on such an obvious call. The television crew working the game was told that Carstensen made the decision that he made because Stone used an open hand when ramming Brown’s head to the floor, instead of a closed fist.
Are you kidding me? There was one correct call and one incorrect call. D.J. Carstensen made the incorrect one.
With regard to Diamond Stone, the Big Ten will hopefully step in and punish the former Whitefish Bay Dominican star further.
Carstensen, at the very least, needs to apologize to Greg Gard and Vitto Brown for not getting the call right.
In case Carstensen has been oblivious to the situation, there’s this big push going on in sports with regards to head injuries and concussions. He obviously forgot about that when trying to decide between an open hand and a closed fist.
There is no gray area here. It was an obvious call to make and Carstensen obviously missed it.