Last night, we saw one of the most controversial moments of the college basketball season at the end of the Tennessee vs. Ole Miss game.
For those that didn’t catch it, UT forward Grant Williams hit a running floater to put the Volunteers up by just one with 4.3 seconds remaining. With one final shot at a game-winning field goal, Ole Miss guard Devontae Shuler hustled down the court and lifted for the 3-point attempt.
Instead of the world seeing a potential game-winner, Tennessee forward Admiral Schofield set himself up underneath the shooter and Shuler was called for the charge.
Take a look at the sequence:
On Saturday, Tennessee lost on a flop. Tonight, they won on a flop.
If you’re going to be known for something, it may as well having big strong players who collapse to the ground like they’ve been shot whenever someone touches them.
— Not Jerry Tipton (@NotJerryTipton) February 28, 2019
On the ensuing possession, the Tennessee inbounder got the ball to the corner, with the Volunteer guard very clearly traveling upon receiving the ball. One official even indicated that he walked.
Instead of overturning the call and giving Ole Miss one more chance at a game-winner, they announced the game as complete. Final score 73-71, Vols win.
When the dust settled on the controversial ending, the Tennessee players quickly wanted to move past the close victory and look ahead to the team’s upcoming rematch with the Kentucky Wildcats.
And by the sound of things, they are looking for revenge, specifically on Kentucky forward PJ Washington.
They heard the trash talk from UK players last time around.
After UK’s victory over Tennessee on February 16, freshman guard Tyler Herro said the Volunteers are “scared” of Washington.
“I think they’re scared of him, honestly,” Herro said. “Scared of PJ. I think a lot of people are now that he’s scoring how he is and doing what he’s doing.”
Back in January of 2018, Grant Williams said that the Kentucky star forward got in his head a bit during the game.
“He shut me down in the first half,” Williams said at the time. “I’ll give it to him. He was in my head a little bit.
After their matchup earlier this season, Washington said he used that quote to his advantage, leading to a 23-point, five-rebound performance.
“When he said that I felt like I had an advantage tonight,” Washington said. “Just try to keep going at him and keep going at their team. And just try to get a victory as we did tonight.”
When asked about the upcoming Kentucky game last night following their victory over Ole Miss, Admiral Schofield jumped into Williams’ interview to throw a quick jab at the Cats.
“Hopefully we’re not scared of PJ (Washington) this time,” he said sarcastically.
Grant Williams surrounded by reporters, gets asked about Kentucky game coming up on Saturday, eagerness to play the Wildcats after what happened the first time.
Admiral walks by, overhears the question.
Admiral: "Hopefully we're not scared of PJ (Washington) this time"
— @GrantRamey (@GrantRamey) February 28, 2019
He continued with the “scared” talk with Williams.
“Hey, you know Grant [Williams] is still scared of PJ Washington, right?” Schofield said.
“No, I’m not,” Williams responded. “[Washington]’s a great player. One of the best in the country. But I’m not [scared].”
As for Tennessee head coach Rick Barnes, he wasn’t as interested in chirping or breaking down the upcoming matchup in detail. He just wanted to go home, Kentucky talk will come later.
“I’m just eager to get home,” he said. “They said our plane isn’t here … we’ll start talking about them (pause) what day is tomorrow? We’ll start talking about them tomorrow.”
Two days away, BBN. Two. Days. Away.