LAWRENCE, Kan. – Third-ranked Kansas and Kansas State ended their bitter showdown Tuesday with a wild melee in the disabled seating behind the Wildcats' basket that included punches, shoving and at least one player threatening to swing a stool.
The Jayhawks were dribbling out the time on their 81-60 win when Silvio De Sousa was stripped by DaJuan Gordon near mid-court. Gordon tried to go for a layup and De Sousa recovered to block his shot and send the freshman sprawling, then stood over him and barked at him – triggering both benches to empty.
At one point, De Sousa picked up a stool and held it over his head before Kansas assistant Jerrance Howard grabbed it from him from behind. The Jayhawks' Marcus Garrett and David McCormick were also in the thick of the scrum along with the Wildcats' James Love and David Sloan.
It took both coaching staffs, the officials and Allen Fieldhouse security to separate the teams.
“Without knowing exactly everything that went down, it was obvious to me that we played a role in what transpired and there will be penalties for that,” said Jayhawks coach Bill Self, who was already shaking hands with Kansas State counterpart Bruce Weber when the chaos erupted. “I need to see the film to comment or have any definitive thoughts on exactly why or how it got started, because to be honest with you I don't have any idea about that.”
Weber had instructed his players to back off in the closing seconds and let the game run out. And while Self said he didn't agree with the steal and layup attempt, he did acknowledge that Kansas State was merely playing to the final whistle.
“Silvio knew he was being defended,” Self said. “He took his ball, and certainly the way Silvio reacted to getting his ball taken, going and blocking his shot, that's fair game. What transpired after that is what set everything off.”
Adding to the bizarre finish, five players from each team were summoned back from the locker rooms by officials and one-tenth of a second was put on the clock. Kansas State shot technical free throws to booing from a few thousand fans, and the one make changed the final score.
The reason only those players returned? The rest of the players from each team – including those in street clothes – were ejected because they had left the bench while the game was in progress.
“It should have been avoided,” Weber said. “It's my guys, it's my fault. They came here wanting to have a game, compete, and we didn't compete the way we needed to, and probably a little frustration, especially the young guys.”
Self was also disappointed with the players' reactions.
“Obviously it's an embarrassment,” Self said. “It's not something to be proud of. What happened showed zero signs of toughness. It's a sign of immaturity and selfishness more so than toughness. If I was a fan watching, depending on your perspective, there would be nothing about that intriguing me to watch more.”
No. 9 VILLANOVA 76, No. 13 BUTLER 61: At Villanova, Pennsylvania, Saddiq Bey hit four 3-pointers and scored 14 points and Jermaine Samuels had 20 points to lead the Wildcats.
Villanova (15-3, 5-1 Big East) methodically pulled away in the second half in a game in which neither team shot particularly well. Villanova led by 11 late in the game despite a 1-for-7 shooting slump; still enough to protect the lead with the Bulldogs on a 1 of 10 slump.
Kamar Baldwin led Butler with 21 points. The fading Bulldogs missed 15 of 20 3-pointers.
No. 17 MARYLAND 77, NORTHWESTERN 66: In Evanston, Illinois, Jalen Smith scored a career-high 25 points, and the Terrapins rallied to win.
Maryland trailed by as much as 15 in the first half and were down 10 in the second when they went on a 15-2 run.
Back-to-back 3-pointers by Aaron Wiggins and Anthony Cowan Jr. gave the Terps (15-4, 5-3 Big Ten) its first lead of the game at 56-55 with 9:10 remaining before Smith punctuated it with a hard dunk. Smith also hit a huge 3 with just under two minutes left to make it 72-63, lifting them to their second straight win after back-to-back losses.
Wiggins addedd 17 as Maryland won despite shooting just 35%.
MARIAN 93, SAINT FRANCIS 91: In Indianapolis, Cameron Wolter 22 points and 13 rebounds to lead the host Knights.
Christian Harvey added 22 points and 4 steals as Marian (16-4, 7-2 Crossroads League) shot 53.8% (28 of 52).
Saint Francis (16-5, 5-4) was led by Antwaan Cushingberry's 21 points. Austin Compton added 15 for the Cougars. Saint Francis trailed by 14 in the second half before pulling within one in the final seconds.