"To Foul Or Not To Foul"
That is the question!
Memphis lost to Kansas after being up three points with 10 seconds to go and now many people are screaming "Memphis should have fouled" to put Kansas at the line for two foul shots instead of giving KU the chance to tie the game and send it into overtime. Here is my take on the situation:
You accidentally foul in the act of shooting giving KU three FT's instead of two. This happens.
KU makes both FT's and steals the inbounds pass and scores, thus winning the game. It can be tough to inbound the ball in that situation, especially with 2-4 seconds to play.
KU makes the first FT, purposely misses the second and tips the ball out to the three point line for a game winning jump shot. This happens, too.
Here is what Memphis MAY have liked to do had they had the opportunity to go back in time: with two time outs left, use one after Derrick Rose's made FT to organize your defense and plan to take away any clean three point attempts by KU's shooters by denying players and switching screens. If a good three-point shooter shoots 40% from the three-point line, you have to believe he will shoot less than 20% if everyone is keying on him? Ok, after Mario Chalmers made the shot, Memphis still had at least 2.5 seconds to call a time out to set up a last shot. I imagine they would like to have called one at that time.
Easier said than done as it can get crazy in those situations.
Has anyone done a mathematical evaluation of this situation? I haven't seen one, but I already asked my staff to look for one!
That is why they call it "March Madness"!