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Tempers flare in Syracuse-Bryant game as Judah Mintz, Doug Edert and assistant coaches get ejected; handshake line botched

Never a dull moment.

Bryant v Syracuse Photo by Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — To say it got heated in the JMA Wireless Dome on Saturday night would be an understatement.

Tempers flared in a chippy basketball game between the Syracuse Orange and Bryant Bulldogs, culminating in a pair of slaps to the face after Judah Mintz drove on Doug Edert and was whistled for a charge. Edert then pushed Mintz, to which Mintz responded by slapping Edert in the face. Edert then retaliated by slapping Mintz across the head.

“Judah got pushed and he swung. You can’t do that. You have to learn. That’s a hard way to learn but that’s the way it is. You just can’t do that,” Jim Boeheim said following the game.

Edert and Mintz were both issued technical fouls and ejected from the contest.

“After the play, No. 25 shoved me a couple times and he wouldn’t stop shoving me so I hit him across the face. No matter what he did—he could’ve shoved me, he could’ve did anything—I can’t respond like that. I can’t retaliate like that. That’s a bad, bad play on my end,” Mintz said.

Syracuse forward John Bol Ajak took exception to Edert’s slap and rushed in to defend his teammate. Both teams were impassioned and assistant coaches moved off their respective benches in attempt to allay further damage.

Boeheim had to encourage Bol Ajak back to the bench. After the play, Bryant’s Tyler Brelsford and Kyvonn Cramer were ejected from the game for leaving the bench. Assistant coaches on both sides were also ejected for leaving the bench, including Syracuse’s Adrian Autry, Allen Griffin and Director of Basketball Operations Peter Corasaniti.

“It’s against the rules for assistant coaches to go onto the court,” Boeheim said. “They were trying to help and separate guys. But it’s a rule — which it’s a bad rule. I can go (on the court) but they can’t. It’s a terrible rule.”

Once the dust settled, Mintz went back to the Syracuse locker room to watch the rest of the game with Autry and Griffin.

“It was just painful knowing that I could’ve been out there to help my team. Sitting out and watching that game hurts more than playing in it, in a way. I’m really disappointed in myself. I’m proud of my teammates for continuing to fight but it’s disappointing,” Mintz said.

Despite the extracurricular activity, Syracuse and Bryant managed to put together a compelling basketball game on Saturday. There were ties and lead changes late and it wasn’t clear who would come out on top at any point down the stretch. Ultimately, Bryant’s Sherif Gross-Bullock hit a game-winning floater with 0.8 seconds left to give his team the victory.

After the final buzzer, Boeheim took exception to the handshake line.

“His players didn’t come and shake hands. They ran off the court, two or three of them. I don’t know why you would do that. We lost, we shook hands. That’s what you do, win or lose,” Boeheim said.

Boeheim also took exception to an exchange with Bryant head coach Jared Grasso. By Boeheim’s count, Grasso issued an insincere apology.

“He gave me a sarcastic apology. Which fits him,” Boeheim said in a stern tone. “It really wasn’t an apology, that’s why I didn’t really accept it. He said he apologized. It wasn’t that kind of apology.”