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Fran McCaffery’s Altercation Earns Two-Game Suspension

The Iowa head coach will be sitting out the next two games.

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NCAA Basketball: Maryland at Iowa
Fran McCaffery
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this week, the Big Ten handed a two-game suspension to Iowa head basketball coach Fran McCaffery. The suspension comes after a heated post-game confrontation with a game official.

After the 90-70 loss to Ohio State in Columbus Tuesday night, coach McCaffery exchanged words with game official Steve McJunkins. McCaffery in the tunnel, accusing McJunkins of “cheating” and calling him a “disgrace” according to the Toledo Blade.

The confrontation was a carry-over of in-game emotions that occurred after McCaffery was called for a late-game technical foul as he stepped on the court to talk to an official. McCaffery’s technical came seconds after his son Connor McCaffery was T’d up for protesting back-to-back fouls called against him including an offensive foul.

Wednesday, McCaffery said in a media release:

“I am in total agreement with the suspension by Iowa Athletics and the fine levied by the Big Ten Conference. My comments directed toward a game official were regretful. I apologize to Big Ten Conference officials, Iowa Athletics, my players and staff, and the tremendous Hawkeye fans. This behavior is not acceptable and I take full responsibility for my inappropriate comments.”

Iowa has supported the Big Ten’s decision to suspend its head coach and accepted the $10,000 fine that was also handed down to the university for McCaffery violating the league’s sportsmanship policy.

University of Iowa Director of Athletics Gray Barta made a statement Wednesday during his media availability following the Big Ten’s decision.

“Fran immediately accepted responsibility for his comments and understands the severe implications of his remarks. Fran fully understands this suspension and penalty imposed by the Big Ten Conference. Fran continues to have my full support moving forward.”

Tuesday night against Ohio State wasn’t the first time McCaffery let his emotions create problems with officials, he has several ejections under his belt dating back to 2006 when he severed as the head coach of Siena. Also, McCaffery was suspended once before as the head coach of Iowa in past years and as early as last season he was ejected from a game at Maryland after storming the court shouting at officials.