Dan Bonner (left), Stan Van Gundy (center) and Kevin Harlan (right) on CBS's broadcast of Colorado-Marquette (Screen Grab: CBS)

Even as an analyst, Stan Van Gundy’s coaching fire and fan passion still burn bright.

Like everyone else watching the 2024 NCAA Tournament, his frustration with officiating taking center stage in close games is growing. And as Van Gundy boastfully said during Sunday’s CBS broadcast of Colorado-Marquette, perhaps we ought to let them play.

With just over 10 minutes to play in this second-round matchup in the South region, Marquette guard Kam Jones drove for a reverse layup in the paint to extend his team’s lead to 64-59. However, the replay showed that Jones’ elbow may have connected with Tristan da Silva’s face, leaving the Colorado forward clutching his jaw in apparent pain.

It was a basketball play, through and through.

And, of course, that led to a review, which drew the ire of Van Gundy.

“He got hit there with a little bit of an elbow,” opined Van Gundy. “It’s just a basketball play on a spin. He is not extending this much. Come on! Let’s go! Move on! Let’s play basketball. That’s what we’re all here to see today!”

No one came to see the officials.

“I’m with Stan on it, let them play,” said CBS/TNT Sports rules analyst Gene Steratore. “I know they’ve got to look, but when you see da Silva grab his jaw like that, you’re gonna be safe as an official and take a quick peek. I think after seeing a couple of great camera shots that we’ve gotten, it’s a basketball play. The elbow doesn’t flair out that much by Jones at all, and let’s play on and continue with this great basketball game.”

And that’s precisely how the officials saw it after the replay. There’s undoubtedly a need to get things right from the officiating crew, but if it’s a basketball play — and a quite obvious one at that — let’s play on.

[Awful Announcing on Twitter/X]

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.