It’s never March Madness without a little drama surrounding the court at some point in the NCAA Tournament. College basketball fans got a dose of that on Thursday night after 9-seed Kansas State upset 5-seed Kentucky in the Sweet Sixteen at Phillips Arena in Atlanta, Ga.
Kansas State players and Kentucky coach John Calipari offered two different tales on what happened postgame amid claims that there wasn’t a handshake between players on both teams after the game.
As seen in a video by ESPN’s Alex Scarborough, Kansas State players told reporters in the locker room after the game ended that Kentucky players didn’t stay on the court to shake hands with them after the game ended — much to their dismay.
Kentucky fans and members of the university athletic department immediately took issue with those comments, as the television broadcast clearly showed Kentucky players shaking hands with Bruce Weber and other members of the Kansas State coaching staff after the game.
There were several false reports last night that our players didn’t shake hands after the game. Our student-athletes did shake hands with the K-State staff while the team was celebrating. Good luck to @KStateMBB and @RamblersMBB in the Elite Eight. pic.twitter.com/lvo8tQjcME
— DeWayne Peevy (@UKDeWaynePeevy) March 23, 2018
So why the conflicting reports between the TV broadcast and the postgame comments from K-State players?
According to Scarborough, Calipari told reporters after the game that he attempted to shake hands with K-State players, but left the floor after they were preoccupied celebrating the victory.
“[K-State players] were turned and celebrating, so I walked off. There was no disrespect for anything. It’s just that they were celebrating, and I was happy for them.” — John Calipari
But even in the context of Kentucky players and coach Calipari failing to shake hands with K-State players because of a postgame celebration that interrupted their efforts to do so, K-State freshman forward Levi Stockard III didn’t feel as if Kentucky made a concerted effort to shake hands, per Scarborough.
“They just walked off the court. I don’t know what it was. I don’t know.” — Levi Stockard III
Regardless, the visual evidence is there that Kentucky didn’t simply walk off the court without congratulating a single K-State individual after the game ended. As for the player to player handshakes after the game, the debate will likely continue on of who was in the right and who was in the wrong.
The post K-State players, Kentucky coach John Calipari express feelings on postgame handshake controversy appeared first on Diehards.
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