Jay Bilas Has Emotional Problems

Submitted by Brian on February 2nd, 2009 at 2:11 PM

Ball transfer with 19 minutes left in a close contest:

Jay Bilas:

"Something must be done about Michigan basketball … [Beilein] must get control of his program."

Flying elbow with under a minute left in a twelve-point game:


"There was nothing wrong with Hansbrough going after that rebound. There was nothing wrong with him trying to score, or with Henderson fouling him. The problem was it was an excessive foul. The rule as written has nothing to do with intent. I don't think Henderson intended to hurt him, but that's not the issue. It was a foul that was too hard. It doesn't make either of them bad kids."

It's been brought up again and again since Tommy Amaker was deservedly fired: Jay Bilas has completely lost his head about Michigan and shouldn't talk about them, ever. Two years ago ESPN ranked the most underachieving programs from 1997 to 2007, and Michigan was #1 with a bullet. Bilas left them off his ballot entirely. A month earlier he attempted to paint the Michigan basketball program as a decrepit wasteland completely demolished by sanctions then ten years old. Midway through Beilein's first season Bilas laid into some harmless comment by Beilein in a manner so stupid it drew a fisk from Jim Carty, who at that time was not a blogger but a sportswriter. Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski picked it up, too:

The more Bilas shills for Amaker, the more people in basketball laugh at him. Unlike Amaker, Beilein never had the ultimate coaching godfather to pick up the phone and get him a job.

“C’mon Jay, that is terrible,” an NBA scout who watched Amaker’s team regularly in the Big Ten emailed me this week after reading Bilas’ blog rant. “Almost laughable, really.”

Even when Bilas is attempting to defend his ridiculous comments about Michigan in the wake of the Harris ejection he fabricates:

"I respect his right to protect his kid and stand up for him, and I respect that, but that doesn't mean I have to buy it. I don't buy it. I saw (the play) 100 times. That's not a basketball play. That's not the way the game is played. How many games are played every day, high school, college or pro, and players execute rip-through moves, and how many noses are broken?"

This is in reference to Beilein describing it as a basketball play. Bilas leaves something out, though:

Players and coaches from both sides said afterward they thought it simply was a "basketball play." Kramer said he didn't consider it a "dirty" play.

Both Painter and Kramer said they saw nothing dirty in the play. Again: Bilas is suggesting that Harris intentionally clocked Kramer in the face because he was frustrated with 19 minutes left in a game Michigan was leading. But Gerald Henderson didn't intend to hurt Tyler Hansborough when he gave him a flying ninja elbow in garbage time. One of these things is "not a basketball play". The other doesn't consider itself a basketball play, it considers itself a leader.

Every time Bilas opens his mouth about Michigan he flushes more of his credibility down the toilet.

Etc.: Carty goes to town on Bilas on WTKA.


Enjoy Life

February 2nd, 2009 at 2:20 PM ^

Bilas is just another commentator on ESPN:


It is kinda funny how none of them remember their comments are stored digitally and so they contradict themselves continuously.


February 2nd, 2009 at 2:23 PM ^

Ugh. I'm more frustrated now than when I listened to the ESPN commentators talk about it the first time.

The worst part was that one of them described it as Michigan's "frustration with losing" that was causing these elbows. Granted, Novak's may fall into that category, but WE WERE WINNING THIS F-ING GAME!

Then again, I also get incredibly frustrated when I'm winning games against teams I'm given a very low probability of beating, so maybe I can see where he's coming from.


February 2nd, 2009 at 2:37 PM ^

A few weeks ago on a ESPN broadcast, fellow commentator Bill Raftery was caught coming back from commercial basically calling Bilas an asshole to Fran Frischilla. Needless to say, I agree.

His Dudeness

February 2nd, 2009 at 3:08 PM ^

I can remember a radio interview Jay once did with Dan LeBetard where he kind of went nuts and kept repeating "That is a dumb question Dan!" over and over then Dan just told Jay to have a nice day and ended the interview. It was awkward.


February 2nd, 2009 at 10:45 PM ^

But he went to Duke - if he thinks it was dirty, then it must be!

Bilas has been a shill for the Duke family for years. When Quin Snyder was driving Missouri basketball into the ground, Bilas was a huge proponent and always talked those teams up. Same with Amaker at Seton Hall. He loves Duke, and while I respect his passion for his alma mater, it blinds him to such an extent that he actually believed Amaker was "turning" this team around the past few seasons, even while the losses piled up and the team went into even greater disarray. Even last year, I remember him knocking Beilein a bit because the team wasn't winning even though they had "good" recruiting classes, intimating that Amaker somehow left the cupboards stocked when he departed.

In most situations, Bilas is a great analyst with top-notch basketball acumen. But when Duke or any of its alumni coach/play, his objectivity goes out the window. I try to tune him out then, and it sounds like most other people do as well.