Ref Ted Valentine Turns Back on UNC Player Asking for a Call

"TV Teddy" struck again during a nationally televised game between the Tar Heels and Florida State.
January 4, 2018, 6:50pm
Screen capture via Twitter/@SportsCenter

Well this is just downright rude. A referee's job is to be as objective and discerning as possible in their work. It's not typically a showman's job—the old maxim goes that a referee does well when they're not noticed at all—but Ted Valentine is no typical referee, and there is a reason why he's known as "TV Teddy."

UNC was playing FSU in a heated game between two top 25 teams, when UNC point guard Joel Berry was clearly grabbed by the wrist, mid-run. This is just about as clear a foul as things can get. Obviously, a ref isn't everywhere at all times, but they should at least admit that they can't see it all. But when Berry politely went over to Valentine after the frustrating sequence, Valentine refused to even acknowledge Berry and literally turned his back on him.

I know what you're thinking: why are players always running their mouth to the ref when things don't go their way? But as Jay Bilas pointed out, Berry is a four-year vet and a captain, he's not trying to show up a ref, he's trying to stick up for himself and the team on an obvious missed call. It's fine that Valentine missed it, but to demonstratively turn his back on another person like that—that is the definition of showing someone up. Dude's acting like a modern day Joe Crawford out here and he's supposed to be the adult on the court.

If the stolen possession weren't bad enough, FSU beat UNC 81-80.