As if a fifth loss in six games weren't damaging enough for Oklahoma State, Marcus Smart found a way to make it worse.
Smart went into the stands and shoved a Texas Tech fan with six seconds left in the Red Raiders' 65-61 upset of the Cowboys in Lubbock on Saturday night.
The sequence began when Smart hustled down court to foul Texas Tech's Jaye Crockett and prevent him from scoring a game-clinching dunk after the Red Raiders had stripped Le'Bryan Nash at the other end of the floor. Smart's momentum caused him to careen into a technician behind the basket just in front of where fans are seated.
As Smart was getting up, he became furious with a middle-aged man in the first row of seats. It's unclear what the fan did or said to Smart, but the Oklahoma State sophomore responded by screaming at the man and delivering a two-handed shove before teammates arrived to drag him away.
Smart received a technical foul as a result of the incident, though he surprisingly was allowed to remain in the game. He was still so incensed when Texas Tech fans stormed the floor at the final buzzer that an Oklahoma State staffer had to restrain him as they walked off the floor into the tunnel together.
There's no immediate word on what sort of further punishment Smart may face, but it's likely Big 12 officials will review the film and make a decision in the next day or two.
Oklahoma State coach Travis Ford insisted in his post-game press conference that he hadn't seen video of the incident yet. Asked if Smart would be punished further, he said, “I’m still trying to figure it out."
The fan involved in the altercation with Smart is Texas Tech alum Jeff Orr, Red Raiders sports information director Trenten Hilburn confirmed late Saturday night.
Orr was the subject of a 2010 profile on the Texas Tech athletics website that called him a "fan extraordinaire" and detailed the distance he travels driving from his Waco home to Lubbock for every Red Raiders basketball game. He also apparently has a history of taunting opposing players, as evidenced by this video of Orr making an obscene gesture in the direction of a Texas A&M player in Feb. 2010.
Regardless, Saturday's outburst wasn't the first time this season Smart has allowed his emotions to get away from him.
When he picked up his second foul with 7 minutes, 24 seconds remaining in the first half of a victory over West Virginia last month, he went to the bench and showed his frustration by kicking a chair. Smart later apologized to his teammates and fans for fouling out of that game, tweeting, "Today wasn't one of my most proudest moments. I lost my composure and left my team hanging. It won't happen again and I apologize to my team."
Prior to the incident with the fan, Smart had been one of the few bright spots for the slumping Cowboys. The All-American candidate scored a team-high 22 points on 6 of 12 shooting to keep Oklahoma State competitive on the road.
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