OPINION: Pitt Player Should Be Reprimanded

West Virginia beat the Pitt Panthers 68-53 in the 2019 version of the Backyard Brawl.  The game was a physical, emotional contest throughout and the referees called 49 total fouls, 27 of which were called on the Mountaineers.

One play that did not get called for a foul was one of the most obvious and intentional.  Trey McGowens, a talented Sophomore guard for the Panthers, stuck his leg out to trip West Virginia Freshman Oscar Tshiebwe as he ran full-speed down court.

Tshiebwe tumbled to the ground – luckily avoiding serious injury – and play continued without a whistle.  It’s important to note that everything close to resembling a foul was call throughout the game, particularly on the Mountaineers, and to miss such an obvious, seemingly vicious foul seems impossible.

Tshiebwe, who finished the game with 20 points and 17 rebounds, responded on Twitter:

While this is not as bad as Myles Garrett of the Cleveland Browns hitting the Pittsburgh Steelers’ quarterback Mason Rudolph’s exposed head with his own helmet, McGowens definitely intentionally tripped Tshiebwe and perhaps intended to hurt him.


Grayson Allen, the former Duke Blue Devil, was suspended by his own coach, Mike Krzyzewski, after being caught tripping a player.  Allen was only reprimanded after tripping three different players, but was certainly considered a “dirty player.”  Allen was initially suspended “indefinitely” by Coach K but ultimately only sat out one game for Duke.

Pitt’s Head Coach Jeff Capel was an assistant under Coach K at Duke and if the NCAA doesn’t reprimand McGowens for his inappropriate, aggressive action, Capel should suspend his guard in the same way that Coach K did.

McGowens, who was a 4 star recruit out of Hargrave Military Academy, was the first verbal commitment to the Pitt Panthers during the Jeff Capel era at Pittsburgh.