NCAA issues official statement after officials allowed wrong Auburn player to shoot key free throws

The officiating at the end of the Auburn-College of Charleston 2018 NCAA Tournament game was a mess, as many believed that a College of Charleston shooter was fouled while attempting a game-tying 3-pointer. But the officials also appered to have an even bigger gaffe, as it sent the wrong Auburn player to the free throw line.

The play in question came after the controversial 3-point attempt. Auburn freshman Chuma Okeke secured the rebound and was fouled by Cameron Johnson. But Auburn’s Jared Harper ended up at the free throw line, making one of two attempts to push Auburn’s lead to 62-58 which was the final score.

Below you can see the NCAA’s statement on what happened.

The official called the foul, briefly turned his head towards the scorers table and then turned his head back to the basket where the foul occurred. When he did so, Auburn’s Jared Harper was holding the ball because Chuma (Okeke) gave it to him just as he grabbed the rebound. The official pointed to Harper, identifying him as the shooter. Had any of the officials been aware of this or had anyone on the officiating crew to the fact that the wrong player was at the foul line, the officials would have been able to review the play and determine Chuma should’ve been the shooter.

Harper is an 82 percent free throw shooter on the season while Okeke is only a 69 percent shooter. Auburn was still in excellent position to win the game, but it is still not a good look for the officials to miss a call at the end of the game. Harper finished the game with 6 points, while Okeke finished with 2.

Related: Auburn basketball grinds out first NCAA Tournament win in 15 years

Auburn advanced with the narrow win and will now take on Clemson in the second round. The teams tip-off in San Diego on Sunday night at 7:10 p.m. The game will air on CBS. The ttwo teams met during football season, with Clemson coming out on top 14-6. The winner of the game will advance to the Sweet 16.

The post NCAA issues official statement after officials allowed wrong Auburn player to shoot key free throws appeared first on SEC Country.

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