Controversial Foul Call Mars Samford Basketball’s Comeback Against Kansas in March Madness

Samford basketball comeback

In a dramatic turn of events during Friday’s March Madness showdown between Samford basketball and 4th seed Kansas, a controversial foul call marred what could have been a stunning comeback for the 13th seed Bulldogs.

Trailing by as much as 20 points against the Jayhawks, Samford clawed their way back into contention, narrowing the lead to 90-89 with just 20 seconds left on the clock. With an open lane to the basket, Kansas’s Nicolas Timberlake seemed poised to extend the lead to 92-89, but Samford’s A.J. Staton-McCray delivered a spectacular block from behind, seemingly cleanly swatting the ball away.

Despite the apparent clean block, officials made a crucial error by calling a foul on Staton-McCray, much to the dismay of the crowd in Salt Lake City, who voiced their disapproval with resounding boos. Even NCAA March Madness rules analyst Gene Steratore, commenting on the telecast, acknowledged it as “a great block by Samford.”

ALSO READ:Kansas Escapes Samford Scare in NCAA Opener

Timberlake capitalized on the controversial call, sinking both free throws to push the lead to 92-89. Though Samford still had a chance to tie the game with a three-pointer, Jermaine Marshall’s attempt fell short, and Kansas regained possession.

Johnny Furphy’s free throw split sealed the Bulldogs’ fate, securing a 93-89 victory for Kansas. Disgruntled fans who witnessed the disputed call live were left questioning the officials’ decision-making.

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