Romar reprimanded by Pac-12 for comments after Huskies loss
SEATTLE (AP) Washington coach Lorenzo Romar was reprimanded Friday by the Pac-12 Conference for comments he made after the Huskies' last-second loss to Oregon State, but he said he felt the need to stand up for his players after one of the most difficult losses of his coaching career.
''I said what I had to say and the league gave its response. I respect their response and we're moving on now,'' Romar said. ''That was done.''
''I want to fight for our guys and I said what I had to say,'' he added. ''No looking back now.''
The punishment came two days after the Huskies' 82-81 loss on Stephen Thompson Jr.'s 3-pointer at the buzzer. Washington had asked for a review of how the final moments were handled after it appeared the game clock started late and Thompson shuffled his feet before releasing the shot. It was a crushing blow to Washington's slim hopes for an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, although Romar believes wins over No. 13 Oregon on Sunday, Washington State next week and a deep run at the Pac-12 tournament may get the Huskies back into consideration.
But that's a tall task that would have been made easier with a win over Oregon State.
''There is still a small hope. We have to go and play well against Oregon and see where that takes us,'' Romar said.
Thompson's game-winning shot came after Oregon State inbounded the ball under its own basket with 3.3 seconds left. Television replays appeared to show the clock starting late and Thompson clearly shuffling his feet and taking extra steps before hitting the deep 3-pointer Wednesday.
After the game, Romar said Thompson traveled but it wasn't called.
On Thursday, the Huskies asked for a review of the final sequence by the conference, but the Pac-12 said the clock was handled properly and the missed traveling call was non-reviewable because it was a judgment decision.
The conference followed up on Friday by saying Romar's reprimand was given because of comments questioning the officiating and ''subsequent public comments that did not support the Conference's statement regarding its review of the end of game situation.''
''The Pac-12 has specific rules that prohibit our coaches from making public comments about officiating,'' Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said in a statement. ''We have an obligation to our membership to enforce the Conference rules which they have approved. As a part of our officiating program, there is a protocol in place for our coaches to provide feedback directly to the coordinator of officials.''
For his part, Romar was ready to move on from the Oregon State loss, while also pointing out ways the Huskies could have made the final seconds moot. Washington was up by six with 1:48 remaining, but David Crisp and Andrew Andrews both missed free throws in the final 21 seconds.
''That was a time my team needed me to be perfect and I came up short,'' Andrews said.