Duke fell 78-75 on the road at Virginia Tech on Monday night and ultimately didn’t get a call after a long review of potential foul play in controversial fashion. It happened after Michael Collins Jr. made a go-ahead basket for the Hokies with 13 seconds left in the game. As he turned to cheer, Collins appeared to punch Duke big man Kyle Filipowski in the throat.
Collins’ punch prompted a lengthy booth review by the officiating staff, who ultimately decided not to call a Flagrant 1 or Flagrant 2 foul. Duke missed a go-ahead basket moments later and ended up surrendering another free throw for a 3-point loss.
“Yeah, he just elbowed me in the Adam’s apple.” Filipovski said postgame. “I couldn’t breathe for a minute, but I had to throw up and I was fine.”
Flag 1 fouls are defined as “excessive or unnecessary in nature or avoidable, not called or called for under the circumstances of the game,” according to the NCAA rule book. A flagrant 1, which seems to fit the definition of the incident, no pun intended, would have resulted in two free throws for Duke and Ball.
Flag 2 offenses are “cruel, cruel or cruel or dangerous or punishing”. A flagrant 2 foul sent Duke to the line for two foul balls and rewarded him with possession. Collins, who hit the basket and later hit the game’s free throw, could have been ejected.
Collins probably didn’t want to hit Filipovski on the holiday, but there’s no need to call a flagrant 1. Given the situation, the evaluation and the point difference, the Hokies probably came away with one.