Big Ten suspends Iowa's Fran McCaffery 1 game

The Big Ten Conference announced a one-game suspension and public reprimand of Iowa men’s basketball head coach Fran McCaffery for violating the Big Ten Sportsmanship Policy during the second half of Iowa’s game at Wisconsin on Sunday.

McCaffery will miss Thursday night’s home game against visiting Northwestern, which is also listed as Fran McCaffery Bobblehead Night on

Here’s a look at the McCaffery bobbleheads given away at Iowa last season.

Fran McCaggery Bobblehead

Iowa has also been fined $10,000 as a result of the violation. The fine and suspension cannot be appealed.

[ MORE: Dienhart: Let’s hope this is the end of it | Watch McCaffery’s postgame news conference ]

In a statement released by the school, Iowa says:

The Big Ten determined that McCaffery’s actions toward the officials were in violation of Big Ten Conference Agreement 10.01, which states in part that “The Big Ten Conference expects all contests involving a member institution to be conducted without compromise to any fundamental element of sportsmanship. Such fundamental elements include integrity of competition, civility toward all, and respect, particularly toward opponents and officials.”

Assistant coach Kirk Speraw will make the head coaching decisions during Thursday game. McCaffery is scheduled to meet with the media in his regular weekly appearance today at 2:30 p.m. ET.

On Monday – after the ejection game but before the suspension was announced – McCaffery participated in the weekly Big Ten teleconference with the media. You can listen to his Q&A session below.


Your Opinion?
Show Comments (19 Comments)
sweaver on 1/7/2014 @ 11:28am EDT Said:

This is a terrible fine and suspension!!! Really? A coach sees a bad call and feels his team, on the road, is getting shafted and expresses his displeasure… and gets more than the 2 T’s and getting kicked out of the game? What a joke… setting up for the Big Ten to be getting very rich this year if this is the ‘standard’… or officials will be able to make bad calls without fear of being called out on the court (forgive the pun) by the coaches. A reprimand would have been enough… punishment does not fit the crime… c’mon… this is ridiculous!

Roger gentry on 1/7/2014 @ 11:31am EDT Said:

When is the big ten going to do something about the officiating suspend them as well

Monte Bainter on 1/7/2014 @ 11:34am EDT Said:

The B1G needs to re-evaluate how the officials call these games. We need fair and impartial officiating. The Badgers were clearly being out-played until the officials stepped in and changed the momentum of the game. If you watch a replay of the game, momentum shifted when the officials avoided calling blatant fouls on Wisconsin and starting calling touch calls against Iowa. I have no problem with Iowa being whistled for a foul as long as you are calling the game fairly. Fran may not be able to comment on it because of rules against criticizing officials, but I can. When is the B1G gonna step up and stop protecting their highest ranked teams and call a fair game?

dbrienzo on 1/7/2014 @ 11:47am EDT Said:

Why don’t you look for officials that can call a fair, consistent game. Big Ten is slowly losing revenues due to the officiating problem. And I have numbers to support that claim. Bob Knight was a problem. Now Bo Ryan is a problem. Fix it!

Michael Eldridge on 1/7/2014 @ 1:32pm EDT Said:

I’m not sure this is entirely fair. After all, he was ejected from the game, and his absence, coupled with the four points resulting from the technical fouls, cost the team a very big game. Isn’t that punishment enough? While I don’t condone his behavior, the officials didn’t appear to be physically threatened like they did during an incident involving a certain Nebraska football coach I seem to recall. Perhaps the fine and reprimand are appropriate, but a suspension penalizes the players too, and they had nothing to do with this.

Bill Edley on 1/7/2014 @ 1:35pm EDT Said:

Strictly applied, the Big Ten’s Conference Agreement 10.01 would result in most college coaches sitting out a game after a technical. It’s too loosely written and therefore arbitrarily enforced.

BuckeyeTom on 1/7/2014 @ 2:51pm EDT Said:

More hypocrisy from the Big Ten! If B1G Agreement 10.01 were consistently enforced, then there would be multiple weekly suspensions from all the fist-pumping self-adulation that goes on after nearly every great play on the football field! Sportsmanship is not just violated by a coach losing his cool, but also by athletes acting selfishly and drawing unnecessary attention to themselves during competition.

lefty on 1/7/2014 @ 7:23pm EDT Said:

All that is going on, nothing would of been said if it was one of the special coaches or teams. I’ve seen worse over the years and nothing happen to those coaches. It seems to be who you are.

Badger Backer on 1/7/2014 @ 10:05pm EDT Said:

I’m not going to comment on whether he should have been suspended because I’m not knowledgable on the BIG’s rules. However, I was at the game and it was officiated poorly for both teams. Many posters above claim that Iowa received all the bad calls and that is not true. It is a case of seeing what you want to see. One referee in particular stunk all night. Both teams received equally bad and inconsistent calls all night long. I will state that the foul before the technicals were called was bad. After that call, Coach McCaffery admits he went looking for a T. What I can’t understand is that he totally lost it when he got what he was looking for. It was fun to watch but he should be embarrassed by it. He looked like a fool.

I’m not an Iowa fan but I do like their team and they have the potential to do some damage come March.

Monte Bainter on 1/8/2014 @ 12:46am EDT Said:

I for one, didn’t intend to imply that Iowa received all the bad calls. But I do believe that the way the officials call the games are usually slanted towards the home teams in general ( including Iowa). It has been this way for many years. I just wish the officials would call the game equally at both ends of the court for both teams. I don’t believe the officials should be the ones that decide the outcome or change the momentum of the game. If they are doing they’re job correctly, they wouldn’t even be noticed. The game should be decided by the players and coaches of the teams playing the game and the refs need to be as invisible as possible. And one more thing, if the coaches can be publicly reprimanded, so should the officials when they blow the calls inconsistently. This bad officiating has been going on way too long in the B1G. Our players and coaches in this conference deserve better.

m gregor on 1/8/2014 @ 10:31am EDT Said:

It appeared to me that the officiating crew attempted to award “home court advantage” in the 2nd half. After being called out by coach Mac, they pulled a “power trip”, by assigning a 2nd “T”, to “put him in his place”. I’m sure the post game report embellished the exchange and in order to “protect” the crew, the BI6 took it further with these unjustified penalties. Please allow the players on the court to determine the outcome of the games. In the end, the best teams will represent the league in the NCAA tourney anyway.

Dave on 1/8/2014 @ 10:42am EDT Said:

It’s funny how people can sit on the internet and complain about how horrible refs are. First, most of you have never officiated a game of basketball in your lives, or played/coached at the D1 level. The Big Ten refs are all fantastic, experienced officials. Any coach in the league would tell you that the crew at the Iowa-Wisconsin game is among the best in the country. Obviously they’ll miss a call here or there, but the only reason we know that is because we get to see each play over and over in slow motion.

McCaffery admitted that he got the first technical on purpose, but then got the second as a mistake. In essence, he intentionally put himself in a position to make the conference and his university look belligerent, whiny, and unsportsmanlike, and then couldn’t control himself and made it worse. Chasing officials across the court after being thrown out of a game should result in a suspension. It’s unacceptable behavior for someone in that prominent of a position in a major university. He should realize that he is representing not only Hawkeye basketball, but also the entire state of Iowa.

dang82 on 1/8/2014 @ 11:59am EDT Said:

Not including the two technical fouls on McCaffery and the three intentional fouls in the final minute when Iowa was trying to come back, Wisconsin was whistled for 22 fouls while Iowa was whistled for 20.

Yes, Wisconsin, a team that almost always commits fewer fouls than its opponent, was actually called for MORE fouls than was Iowa in this game.

Sure, there were some questionable calls on both ends (including a crucial fourth foul on the Badgers’ Josh Gasser), just as there are in every college basketball game, where officials must make a split-second decision as to who initiated contact.

But this whole notion that Iowa was somehow getting an unfair shake is nothing but revisionist’s history.

Also, for those who watched on TV, the highlight of McCaffery’s antics shown on BTN did not tell the whole story. He was extremely out of control for the entire duration of the media timeout, charged at a third official and had to be restrained, refused to leave the court after being ejected, huddled with his team afterward, and nearly had to be escorted out by security. He was very fortunate to avoid a THIRD technical foul.

The suspension and fine are very well deserved.

Dan Lambert on 1/8/2014 @ 12:04pm EDT Said:

I guess the Big 10 wasn’t watching the OSU/Michigan State coaches and calls last night. Consistently poor no-calls on both sides and a few occasional unexplainable touch calls. Both coaches were livid much of the game.

Bruce Bloedorn on 1/8/2014 @ 12:04pm EDT Said:

The game is one thing, but here you have an adult in a leadership position who should know the rules and standards expected by the B10 conference and the university system they are employed by. You can write and complain (blah, blah, blah) about the officials and why or why not you like/follow a particular sports team, but really this behavior is not acceptable.
Embarrassing to say the least! As a parent, would you want your son playing for someone this out of control???

Cinboiler on 1/8/2014 @ 1:47pm EDT Said:

Fran is a great coach and person. I am a Purdue fan. He has done great at Iowa and is returning them to the level of greatness I have known Iowa for through the years. 1 or 2 missed calls at the right time in a game determine the outcome. Officials do not like to be told they made a mistake, I think that is wrong. I hope the Big Ten is reviewing the games and realizes these mistakes are happening and the officials should be called out if they are wrong.

Brian Schwartz (@bwschwa) on 1/8/2014 @ 2:06pm EDT Said:

ridiculous … I stand with Fran

Leroy A. Powell on 1/9/2014 @ 10:42am EDT Said:

Dave says all the officials are “fantastic”. Really ? Take a game tape, put it on silent mode so there is no crowd noise or broadcaster voice influencing things,…and just watch the action. My contention is that the basic “judgment” calls are both good and bad and that these officials are no more consistent with their calls than some good, experienced high school officials. The things they have going for them is that they are usually pretty good at communicating with the players and listening to the coaches vent. And, most importantly, they know someone at the Big Ten office. You don’t get there without knowing someone of importance.

And, Dang82, let me suggest that the total fouls for the full game is no measure. Take a look, again on silent mode, at the first part of the 2nd half, leading up to the technical. What was the difference during that stretch when Wisconsin was making their run ? My contention is that the fantastic officials, praised by Dave, often get caught up in the excitement of the crowd and the balance of the calls shifts favorably with the crowd excitement. And, finally, watch the first five minutes after those technical. The fouls suddenly started going back against Wisconsin. That is how you get to the 22-20 totals. Momentum is the key thing. It is when the fouls are called, not just how many.

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