It was only a short week ago when an “illegal uniform” technical was called on an Illinois high school during their title game, and their margin of defeat was that one free throw. Oh, and the call was the first technical of the sort they’d been issued all season long. Now it looks like “nofunski basketball Stalinists waiting until March to enforce obscure rules” isn’t just a one-off occasion, but a practice.
That’s Pitt’s beastman forward, DeJuan Blair. On those mammoth arms, Blair has helped carry the Panthers to the Elite 8, where they face familiar Big East foe Villanova tonight. He’ll look different, though, as accordng to PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW, the NCAA has finally decided those double-biceps armbands had to go. Immediately.
Blair was told by NCAA officials at halftime Thursday that he couldn’t wear them unless they were for medicinal purposes. He took them off for the second half and grabbed 13 of his game-high 17 rebounds.
“I was mad,” he said. “They made me take them off. I said ‘I’ve been doing this (all season).’ “
Did they seriously not notice those things until just now? What merit is there to forcing him to drop the armbands now, if at all? Sure, the NCAA probably wants to avoid going any farther down this road, as arm decorations go:
But to mangle a saying, why can’t they just wait to burn that bridge until they cross it? There’s nothing distasteful, unsightly, or otherwise objectionable about Blair’s trademark bands except for the fact that they’re against regulations (and, um, kinda useless). Doesn’t that make the rules more of a problem than the “infraction”, then?
Hang on, I want to see the Ultimate Warrior picture again.
[UPDATE: Blair’s still wearing those armbands tonight, after all. Did the NC Double-A-holes catch a quick case of sanity for once? What in the hell is going on here?! DEVELOPING…]