University of South Carolina women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley made a complaint to the SEC league office concerning controversial officiating and physical play during the Gamecocks’ Jan. 7 game against Missouri.
Staley was quickly supported by USC athletic director Ray Tanner, who took the complaint — which included questions about technical fouls awarded during the game — directly to SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, according to The State.
USC fans felt the fouls were one-sided, while Missouri seemed to get away with very physical plays. Staley is said to have confronted SEC officials about assigning two referees to the game with an alleged history of making harsh calls for USC.
At a press conference Friday, Tanner and Staley both confirmed that they had reached out to SEC officials and had received a response, though both declined to share the nature of the response or the specifics of the complaint.
In a statement, Tanner said, “I had conversations with the league office … and discussed some things about what transpired in the game, and you heard what Coach Staley had to say publicly. I got a chance to visit with our commissioner as well. So I’ll leave it at that.”
Thus far, the SEC has not announced any repercussions resulting from Staley’s complaint or any disciplinary action to be taken for the referees. “As officiating communications are addressed internally, the SEC office will have no further comment related to Sunday’s South Carolina-Missouri women’s basketball game,” said a spokesperson.
USC is scheduled to take on Missouri again Jan. 28 at Colonial Life Arena.