Jay Bilas: Ad Nauseam

  • I didn’t used to have a major problem with Jay Bilas calling games. In the past, he seemed alright when compared to some of the other commentators.

    I now realize more about Bilas. I guess he dislikes the Kansas Jayhawks. That is the only reason I could come up with to describe what he did this afternoon.

    I’ve ranted about Jay Bilas before. At the beginning of the season, Jay was one of the commentators that spoke up being for the new rule enforcements which basically ended lock down defense. This was the guy who claimed contact was ruining college basketball.

    This was the same guy who excused two obvious cases of mugball in today’s game with Georgetown. This was the guy who thought it was fine for Josh Smith to lead with his elbow (head high). This was the guy who thought it was okay for the Georgetown defender to swat down with all his force on Perry’s head while going for the ball (sort of).

    Anyone who has ever dribbled a basketball in a competitive game knows the intent of that foul on Perry’s head. When a defender brings the full force of his arm down on another player’s head, it doesn’t matter if he makes contact with the ball or not, it is an intentional foul because the intent is to injure the player. The fact that it was not called, is outrageous, and even more outrageous to hear Jay Bilas defend it.

    Let me put it to you this way. That foul qualified as an intentional foul in the NFL! Rushing defense coming in on the quarterback can not spike down on his head.

    Let’s put it to you one more way. Imagine Georgetown had been Kansas today, and imagine Kansas had been Duke. Do you think Bilas would have defended these fouls as non-intentional? Want to buy some beach front property in Alligator Alley?

    Perry will be okay. But don’t tell me he didn’t suffer a concussion. The rules put in place to protect players from head injuries didn’t work today.

    Look at all the violence committed by Georgetown today. And then look at Bilas’ responses… “Georgetown is showing their frustration…” no s#it, Sherlock?! Let me remind you that this is the guy who has been selling a softer game of college ball all year. This is the guy who couldn’t stand for defenders to put a hand on a ball handler while driving. This is a guy who could only comment today how Georgetown played with frustration.

    All our bigs got hammered today. Embiid took an elbow to the head and had to sit, Perry took an arm smash to the head and departed to the locker room, Black took an elbow to the face and later on he took a hand to the chin. And what about that cheap shot attempt at Wiggins?

    None of this is a surprise to me or anyone who follows a bit of Georgetown basketball. Thompson never has a disciplined team. He isn’t even in the list of Top 100 coaches in college basketball. Today, those guys had a losing attitude even when they were winning. You could see that from China. Why couldn’t Bilas see it? Why couldn’t Bilas call out Thompson to call a time-out and try to address his team’s poor attitude? Why couldn’t Bilas cry out against those fouls for what they really were? Why wasn’t Bilas upset watching Georgetown play mugball?

    I was more disgusted with Bilas than Thompson. Thompson is Thompson, and doesn’t pretend to be a guy standing on an elite level. Bilas does. But for some reason his elite status was on Christmas break today, and it was okay to watch a game remain on the edge of coming apart all day because one team brought in a loser attitude and decided violence would take precedence over the game of basketball.

    I vote we ban Bilas from AFH. He doesn’t belong on the campus of Kansas. He should stick it out on the Duke campus and continue to pretend he knows what he is talking about. I guess he learned the game of basketball in the NBA. He did have his 15 minutes of fame, when they called his name in the fifth round!

  • @drgnslyr I’ve always been a fan of Bilas because he seems to be the most rational and impartial guy. I like his expertise and his candor against NCAA. Having said that, I was appalled today and couldn’t believe this was Bilas. Especially, when he called out Wiggins throwing the ball in frustration but completely ignored the defender’s intentional swipe at Wiggins head. I hope this was an anomaly because I really do like him. Today was unforgivable.

  • Sometimes I think our bias may get the best of us. I didn’t think Bilas did a poor job of calling the game at all.

    When he said Josh Smith’s elbow shouldn’t have been a flagrant, I can’t disagree with him. But that’s the rule, unintentional or not, and Bilas said as such. The second suspected flagrant against Ellis, Bilas said if you’re going to call a flagrant, how can you not call that. Which is true. The third, when Wiggins got slapped then threw the ball, he said you’ve got to call something there (especially when they have the ability to go back and look at the play) because Wiggins threw the ball at another player, which again I would agree with.

    Now, I absolutely cannot stand Dick Vitale (although I think he did an alright job when we played Florida) because he goes on and on about the same thing…ad nauseam. People said the same thing about Bob Knight.

    I think if Jay Bilas and Jalen Rose called every college game, I’d probably watch it. But that’s just my opinion.

  • @drgnslayr - Ah, you posted what we were all thinking. Hard to listen to today.

    His participation in broadcasts anymore deteriorates to his thumbs up, or thumbs down, to every call that is made.

    He was a major advocate of the new application of the rules, yet continues to refuse to acknowledge that the new application has been wildly inconsistent. His simple minded response is always, “well, they didn’t foul.”

    And I would love to debate the guy on his villainizing of the NCAA. His arguments ignore that adults a free to make choices.

    Compared to Stan Van Gundy, Bilas was pretty good today … but that’s an extremely low bar. It was difficult to listen to.

  • In my jaded opinion most all color guys at the Nat level in CBB, NFL, CFB, etc., are just one thing & one thing only-consistent peckerwoods, just agreeing with whatever they see at the moment. They talk because they’re supposed to & most say very little worth merit-until a team begins to pull away & then they jump on the bandwagon for the eventual winner. After all who can blame em’, everyone loves a winner. OK, Jimmy Dykes, Bob Knight, there are a few that enhance a broadcast with real savvy game knowledge, but few & far apart at best. I do like Kevin Harlan, who still lives here in the metro, Gus Johnson who was a real exciting P by P guy at cbs, & Vern Lundquist is OK, to name 3 that I don’t mind. But I’ve a real tough time listening to damn near all who work at espn or abc. And I especially find Dook alum Bilas about as wishy washy & irritating as they come, on par level with the old rambling man B Mus(h)berger. Wish they’d keep him in ACC territory & we wouldn’t need to have this conversation after the Hoyas “frustrating” exhibit of jb’s Xtreme muscle (thug) ball at AFH today. Local sports said Perry has a bruised nerve in his neck so far & no mention of a concussion as of 6:00pm.

  • Bilas is by and large one of the better college BBall analysts. Unfortunately, he has taken a side in the new rules controversy and now he is caught in a catch 22 situation, where he sees the change he advocated seriously misused to the detriment of the game. Today’s game was not one of his better performances, probably a combination of KU beating Duke earlier and our own biases against anything that we see as an attack on KU.

  • It wasn’t that bad but Bilas definitely wasn’t pro KU with his commentary today. Normally he’s objective and he possesses good insight, which is why he’s my favorite college basketball analyst. He’s a former Duke player so maybe he’s still a little irked that KU beat them earlier in the season. Or maybe it’s like a Wiggins/Parker thing where he thinks Parker is the better player and is mad because a lot of mock drafts still have Wiggins going #1 ahead of Parker. I don’t know.

    I still prefer him over every other college basketball commentator, especially superlative Vitale and Big 10 Dakich.

  • We won the game and there is a reason that Coach Self recruits the East Coast so well. It is physical. I am not saying that it is right, only that it is a physical brand of basketball. Remember, There is trash talk from both sides. There are elbows being thrown from both sides that we may not see. There is retaliation for things said and for physical acts throughout the course of the game, such as a subtle push in the back or grab of the arm, that the refs did not call or see. I can tolerate Jay Bilas, he can say what he wants, I am sure he is getting paid quite well to do so. Everything is not going to go our way, and believe me there are plenty of fans out there rooting against us saying we get every call because we are Kansas. If you think that game was physical, wait until we go on the road for Conference play, that is exactly what Coach Self set these games up for, to prepare the team for a long hard fought physical journey. It can be hard to watch, and I agree that the commentator’s comments can lead to further frustration, but we will be alright in the long run. We are not the only team experiencing physical play. We did end up with quite a few knots on our heads today, and I didn’t like it either. These are the kind of games that have sent us home early in the tournament. Can’t say that we were soft this time around.

  • Same thing occurred in the Texas Michigan State game. Tim Brando was so up Izzo’s arse before the game it was sickening. Greg Anthony too. When Texas led at halftime and was leading into the second half they couldn’t find anything to talk about Texas except all the players who left last year and Barnes not getting to the tournament last year. I turned the volume down and listened to play by play by UT guys.

  • From NCAA site: Fouls language

    The terms “Flagrant 1” and “Flagrant 2” will now be used in these situations. A Flagrant 1 foul takes the place of an intentional foul and the Flagrant 2 foul replaces the previous flagrant foul. An example of a Flagrant 1 foul would be a player who swings an elbow and makes non-excessive contact with an opponent above the shoulders. The team whose player was struck would receive two free throws and possession of the ball. Previously, this type of foul was called an intentional foul. The committee wanted to move away from the word “intentional,” because a player’s intent was never the point to the rule. An example of a Flagrant 2 foul would be a player who swings an elbow excessively and makes contact with an opponent above the shoulders. In this case, the player who threw the elbow would be ejected from the game, and the other team would receive two free throws and the ball.

    From the NCAA this year:

    In men’s and women’s basketball, panel members approved a tweak to the rules regarding elbow contact above the shoulders. In these circumstances, officials may use the monitor to determine if a flagrant foul has been committed. Officials will determine if the contact was a flagrant 2, flagrant 1, common foul or no call. When the officials use the monitor to review a situation that is not called on the floor, the only options are flagrant 2, flagrant 1 or no foul. In a flagrant 1 situation, the player who was struck is awarded two free throws and his or her team gets possession of the ball. In a flagrant 2 situation, free throws and possession are awarded and the player who threw the elbow is ejected from the game. The men’s and women’s basketball committees felt the original intent of the elbow rules have caused too many flagrant fouls being called when they weren’t appropriate. The intent of the elbow rule has always been to protect players and eliminate the rip move where players were making contact above the shoulders of defenders. By allowing officials to review these plays on the monitor, both committees believe it will eliminate the non-deserving flagrant 1 fouls in particular.

    Jay Bias loves to hear himself talk. How can he say the new rules needed to be called all along because they’re in the rule book but then say that all of the above the shoulder hits are clean. It’s in the rule book Jay.

  • drgn, I would have to agree this was a tough game to listen to Bilas–> especially since usually I have found him to be fair in the past. I dont understand his stance vs. the NCAA exactly.

    My take on the rule-change is that while I didnt like people getting absolutely “mugged” and no foul was called…it seems we way-overcorrected in the play calling. Finding a happy medium on contact-fouls seems to be the most reasonable thing, IF that can be achieved…

    G’town played like thugs…people dont like that moniker, well talk to John ThompsonIII about why people have that impression. Thompson been taking notes from that coach at Cal (with that Gutierrez ponytailpunk, and the whiteguy forward that karate’d Marcus in the back, Marcus reacted & got ejected).

    I wish Self would have ‘generated’ a technical on himself just to prove the point about G’town’s play. Plus that works the officials to redress the balance. But Self is very strategic with his technicals…and he also wants his team “toughened”, so maybe let this all play out.

    John ThompsonIII was actually correct in his comments about his players not playing tough in the “right” areas: boxing out, rebounds, 50/50 balls. After all, tomahacking Perry Ellis was an absolute desparate act by a beaten player.

  • I may have gone a bit over the top on my rant… but of all people to turn the other way to cheap shots, Jay Bilas shouldn’t be the one.

    This was a perfect game for one of our guys to suffer a broken nose, detached retina, etc…

    But I am impressed how our guys stayed focused and kept grinding!

    It was an impressive win because of that and the experience will help us out.

    Josh Smith clearly runs this team. He had an attitude when he played for UCLA, and he hasn’t changed.

  • Normally I like Bilas, but this game was terrible. He sounded like a jaded Dookie. I wonder if KU had lost to Duke what this game would’ve sounded like. There have been times that I though Jay was very pro KU, but something is in his craw.

  • I watched game w a Hoya and didn’t really listen. I’ve been such a fan of Bilas that I don’t want it to be true. Bilas losing his impartialness would be like kusports requiring a Facebook login and losing jaybate!

    But I digress, let’s start a top 10 list of announcers. Who’s the worst, Kellogg or Vitale?

  • Jimmy Dykes is probably the best TV bball analyst/announcer I have heard call a game. I learn stuff every game he calls. I saw Bobby Knight the same way, but he was a bit more colorful in his critique, and has become a polarized figure (love/hate him).

    Kevin Harlan has always been good, but he’s more of a play-by-play caller instead of an on-mic analyst.

  • When it comes to pure basketball analysis, the general is the best, he truly knows the game inside and out and can explain plays better than anyone else…he is definitely and acquired taste though.

  • I miss Bobby Knight. You had to excuse his mistakes on names and such… but at least he knows the game. He would have called that game much different than Bilas. He wouldn’t be excusing Georgetown because they were frustrated. He would have blasted Thompson for letting his guys develop that kind of attitude and for those moments that were out of control.

    You would never see a guy like Josh Smith playing for Bobby Knight.

  • I miss Al McGuire. Likeable and down to earth.

    I remember him saying once: “Sit a player with 3 fouls, but when he gets 4 just leave him in. He’s no good to ya…”

  • The only thing more annoying then Dick Vitale is when KU fans complain about announcers not being pro KU in every aspect. Bilas is the best in the business for not doing everything you’re complaining about. It wasn’t an “anomaly” of a game for him he was imply correct in what he was saying and you didn’t like it.

    I have the best fantasy football team and cutest dog on the planet.

  • I like Jay alright, yet miss Lindsey Nelson, you young whippers won’t know him. Driving to grandma’s over the holidays Dad would have him on the radio. A distinctive voice, an early K. Harlan. Lindsey Nelson (May 25, 1919 – June 10, 1995) was an American sportscaster best known for his broadcasts of college football and New York Mets baseball. He spent 17 years with the New York Mets and three years with the San Francisco Giants. For 33 years Nelson covered college football, including 26 Cotton Bowls, five Sugar Bowls, four Rose Bowls, and 14 years announcing Notre Dame games. He is in 13 separate Halls of Fame. Fans remember a talented broadcaster, an expert storyteller, and a true sports enthusiast. From his colorful jackets to his equally colorful broadcasts, Nelson established himself as one of the industry’s leading sportscasters.

  • I don’t care for Bobby “Pump Fake” Knight (too lazy to bother to learn players names.) Gus Johnson and Bill Raftery are some of my favorites. I like Kevin Harlan quite a bit too. I hate to say it, but one of my guilty announcer likes is Doug “Pants on Backwards” Gottlieb. He’s just not afraid to say whatever he thinks - and I like that.

    IMO, Jay Bilas has been one of the best in the business. This last game, I did find him to be off a bit. Through the ears of this homer, at times I thought he was overly critical of Wiggins. I also thought he was way off for not calling out the repeated cheap head shots by the Georgetown Gang. Case in point: Is it really worse to weakly throw a ball in the general direction of a player than it is to rake someone across the face after the whistle blows? He only called out Wiggins on that play - not the GT player after several replays showed a pretty dirty play by the GT player in my book. That said, I still think he’s insightful and pretty funny. I’ll chalk this one up to a below average performance.

  • Sorry - JayDoc is correct and I was off point. Gus Johnson is the best in the business. Everything else I said is 100% correct.

  • @iowajayhawk2005

    Many of us mentioned that we think highly of Bilas; however, any unbiased observer after watching the game would conclude that Bilas was not calling the game impartially. I don’t expect commentators to be “pro” KU, on the other hand I don’t expect them to be “anti” KU either. As many have mentioned, Saturday’s broadcast was no typical of Jay Bilas and if you don’t see that, you are as blind as he appeared to be Saturday.

  • @lighthawk Lindsay Nelson & Chris Schenkel were my 2 fav sportscasters as a kid. But the one guy I’ll probably miss most going forward to BG 12 coverage this season is Fred White. Fred was from Kansas & still was professional enough to not let his love of KU, KSU. Wichita, PSU, or any other school show his preferences & get in the way of the beauty of his skills. Very similar to Oswego’s Ted Watts painting Heisman portraits for the CFBHOF, Kansas University murals & compositions, or his diverse Big 8 panoramas. Fred was an exceptionally exciting & descriptive P/P guy no matter if he were calling baseball, basketball, or tiddlywinks. IMO the old school broadcasters that served their apprenticeships differently & modeled their craft by doing radio for years prior are just a cut above in their skills versus the “personalities” (egos) created by todays television & online media. TV news has such goofy & dramatic acting journalists, I find very little impartial reporting left anywhere, and especially at the local levels, & the worst being what I enjoy viewing most of all… live sports.

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