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The Wallace-Riddick Incident

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From the 1995 NCAA Southeast Regional Final between #1 seed Kentucky and #2 seed UNC. I came across this posted at IC. Given what happened last Saturday I thought this would be interesting to note for comparison.

Some things that jumped out to me.

  • I don't think Rasheed Wallace meant to strike Andre Riddick in the face with his elbow but it happened after the whistle so it was probably called correctly as a "unsportsman foul"
  • Riddick took exception to the elbow and grabs Wallace around the neck. When you think about that, it is somewhat humorous that he opted for the choke hold and not punching/pushing him. If this game were played today, Riddick would have been ejected and Wallace may have been as well which is to say the NCAA has gotten more stringent on this business.
  • Jerry Stackhouse jumped in very much as a peacemaker but also saves Wallace from doing something and to protect him. Dante Calabria can be seen holding back a UK player.
  • Rick Pitino was out on the court as soon as the situation went south. Dean decided to stay by the bench. This is noteworthy since I think it speaks to Dean's personality more than anything. Last Saturday Roy did the same thing Pitino did and walked onto the court to try and deal with the situation. Dean obviously did not operate that way. If a player would have been injured Dean would have been right threre(Roy does the same thing in that regard) but something like this Dean stayed back and let the refs sort it out. It was obvious Dean had no problem with the refs' decision. Pitino was upset(rightfully so) that they were tagging the wrong player with the technical foul.
  • I don't know what Bill Rafetery's problem was but he acted like Wallace committed felony assault then goes as far as to say he understood why Riddick would then run up and choke Wallace for the elbow? Really Bill? Good to know choking is justified if you take a hard elbow that seemed to be unintentional. If the elbow was as bad as Rafetery said, Riddick would have been prone on the ground trying to find his teeth.
  • UNC won the game and went to the Final Four. It was not even close at the end.
  • Dean Smith owned Rick Pitino.