Harvard, a No. 12 seed, has been a popular pick to upset No. 5 seed Cincinnati in the East region of the NCAA tournament. The sharpshooting Ivy League champs have five players who average double figures, so the Bearcats had their hands full coming into Thursday’s matchup.
Self-inflicted mistakes would not help Cincinnati's cause.
With Cincy’s offense struggling early in the game, Harvard jumped out to a 12-6 lead at the first media timeout at the 11:11 mark in the first half. At that point, Cincinnati head coach Mick Cronin decided to make some substitutions. When he brought junior forward Jermaine Sanders into the ballgame, Cronin was called for a strange technical foul.
Whoever had filled in the scorebook with the team roster for the Bearcats inexplicably forgot to list Sanders. When Cronin brought him into the game, an administrative technical foul was assessed, giving Harvard two free throws and the ball.
Harvard’s Siyani Chambers hit one of two free throws to increase the Crimson’s lead to 13-6.
The administrative technical foul is something rarely seen at the Division I level, but Nevada was called for one in the Mountain West tournament against Boise State on March 13. The Wolf Pack listed a player with the incorrect jersey number and Boise State shot two free throws.
Someone will have some explaining to do after the game, but it will probably be low on the list of problems that Cincy will need to address after Harvard pulled off the upset, 61-57.
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