GAMEDAY Mens Basketball

Villanova 72, Creighton 60

(AP Photo/Laurence Kesterson)
By DAN GELSTON
AP Sports Writer

VILLANOVA, Pa. - Justin Moore scored 24 points and helped No. 10 Villanova capture the Big East title with a 72-60 win over a No. 14 Creighton team playing with coach Greg McDermott under fire for using language evocative of slavery.

McDermott, who had apologized for urging his players to "stay on the plantation" in a postgame locker room talk following a loss over the weekend, said on Creighton's pregame radio show that he offered to resign. McDermott said had a long meeting with players on Sunday night and said he saw "pain in their face(s)" and hoped "one mistake doesn't define you."

McDermott said he wanted to make sure the Blue Jays wanted him to remain as coach and apologized for the "distraction that I brought to this team for the choice that I made."

McDermott said the Blue Jays - whose players wear "equality" on the back of their jerseys - did not ask for him to resign.

"Our guys wanted me to coach and that's my job," McDermott said.

McDermott has been Creighton's coach since 2010. McDermott, who is white, acknowledged saying: "Guys, we got to stick together. We need both feet in. I need everybody to stay on the plantation. I can't have anybody leave the plantation."

The coach added that he apologized directly to Creighton's president, the Rev. Daniel Hendrickson, and athletic director Bruce Rasmussen.

Creighton assistant coach Terrence Rencher, who is Black, tweeted that he was "deeply hurt" by McDermott's words.

The school said any disciplinary action would remain confidential.

McDermott was on the sideline and received a fist bump from seemingly all but one player as they ran off the court from pregame warmups.

McDermott's racially insensitive remarks overshadowed what was expected to be fantastic showdown between the top two teams in the Big East. The Wildcats instead raced to a 19-point lead and clinched their seventh regular-season title under coach Jay Wright in the last eight seasons.

The Wildcats lost Collin Gillespie, their star senior guard averaging 14.4 points, to a left knee injury in the first half. He writhed in pain on the court and immediately needed help to the locker room.

"It's serious. We don't know exactly what it is, but it's serious," Wright said.

Mitch Ballock led Creighton with 14 points.

March 3, 2021



Creighton
Player Pos Min FG-FGA FT-FTA 3P-3PA OR-TR Ast Blk Stl TO PF Pts
D. Jefferson F 32 6-10 0-2 1-4 2-8 4 0 0 0 3 13
C. Bishop F 26 2-5 1-1 0-0 1-7 1 2 1 4 1 5
M. Zegarowski G 33 4-13 0-0 2-8 0-2 4 0 2 1 1 10
M. Ballock G 31 5-11 0-0 4-9 0-1 1 0 2 0 1 14
D. Mahoney G 19 1-6 0-0 1-5 0-1 1 0 0 2 2 3
S. Mitchell   21 3-8 0-0 2-5 0-3 3 0 0 1 2 8
R. Kalkbrenner   14 3-4 1-4 0-0 2-4 0 1 1 0 0 7
A. O'Connell   14 0-4 0-0 0-2 1-3 1 0 1 1 1 0
A. Jones   10 0-1 0-0 0-0 0-1 1 0 0 0 3 0
Totals   200 24-62
(.387)
2-7
(.286)
10-33
(.303)
8-32 16 3 7 9 14 60


Villanova
Player Pos Min FG-FGA FT-FTA 3P-3PA OR-TR Ast Blk Stl TO PF Pts
J. Samuels F 39 3-11 0-0 1-5 0-4 7 0 1 1 1 7
J. Robinson-Earl F 36 6-13 2-3 0-3 0-14 5 0 0 1 1 14
C. Daniels G 31 1-7 2-2 1-6 1-2 0 0 2 4 3 5
J. Moore G 31 9-12 3-3 3-5 0-5 5 1 1 0 2 24
C. Gillespie G 13 2-3 0-0 1-2 0-2 2 0 0 2 0 5
B. Slater   23 5-8 0-0 1-2 2-5 1 0 2 1 4 11
C. Swider   14 1-3 0-0 1-2 1-4 0 0 0 0 0 3
B. Antoine   10 1-1 0-0 1-1 1-1 1 0 1 0 0 3
Totals   197 28-58
(.483)
7-8
(.875)
9-26
(.346)
6-38 21 1 7 9 11 72

Officials: Pat Driscoll, Brian O'Connell, Ron Groover




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