NEC reprimands Coach Toole and officials


Photo Credit: David Auth

Nick Hedderick, Sports Editor

MOON TOWNSHIP– On Saturday, the Robert Morris men’s basketball team (15-12, 11-3 NEC) fell by just one point to Fairleigh Dickinson (8-16, 6-7 NEC), 72-71.

During the final seconds of the game, Josh Williams was run over by FDU’s Kaleb Bishop during the Colonials’ inbound play.

No foul was called, and RMU’s attempt to win the game ended up being unsuccessful.

Following the final horn, the refs immediately darted off of the court while coaches from both sides discussed the missed call.

Coach Andy Toole discussed the game’s final seconds after the game as well.

“The fact that my guy gets a tech for flexing, but you don’t call a foul for someone literally trucking into you is insane. I did not know trucking into people was legal. I will acknowledge the fact that my team did not play defense when they needed to, but still, that foul needs to be called,” said Toole.

The flexing comment was in reference to AJ Bramah’s technical foul that occurred earlier in the game following his dunk on an FDU player. Bramah then appeared taunt the player, which resulted in the technical foul.

Toole continued by stating “This is home-court advantage. People are trying to win a championship so they can host games in the NEC Tournament. So for guys to miss calls like that, is just inexcusable. It’s inexcusable, and that can have a direct impact on where people go late in the season in terms of hosting a semi-final game, hosting a quarterfinal game, hosting a championship game.”

Earlier today, the NEC released a statement on what transpired on Saturday.

This statement stated that the conference “Issued a reprimand to two officials that worked the game as well as RMU men’s basketball head coach Andrew Toole for his public criticism of those officials.”

Commissioner Norris of the NEC stated “The NEC has high standards for our officials, coaches and student-athletes, and we hold them accountable when those standards are not met. In this case, the officials did not perform up to our expectations, and the head coach’s response to their performance was unacceptable. With that said, both parties are being reprimanded.”

The Colonials are back in action on Tuesday when they take on Saint Francis University (17-8, 10-4 NEC). On Feb. 23, Robert Morris takes on Fairleigh Dickinson once again, this time in New Jersey.