Referee Karl Hess Came Within Moments Of Catching A Swirly From A Large And Pissed-Off Head Coach

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Scene-munching referee Karl Hess worked a Samford-East Tennessee State overtime game Thursday night, eventually won by ETSU, 81–72. Hess, you may recall, was shitcanned by the ACC in January 2015 after an ugly taunt of a former Wake Forest board of trustees chairman broke the camel’s back, but he’s been working for other conferences in the years since.

Hess is a boob. He famously once ejected Nebraska head coach Tim Miles from an NCAA tournament game for the crime of alerting officials to a shot clock malfunction. In 2012 he ejected Tom Gugliotta from a game Gugs was watching from the stands. He once gave Rick Pitino a technical foul for yelling at his own player. In 2013 he had Marquette and UConn shooting at the wrong baskets in one of the most bizarre and mangled overtime periods you will ever see. He took over and ruined the final moments of a Final Four game in 2013 with inexplicable and inexplicably quick whistles. He stinks.


Back to Thursday night. Samford was down four with just under two minutes left in the second half, and their head coach, the extremely large Scott Padgett, was unhappy with the officiating, as happens. As does not happen, Karl Hess responded to Padgett’s bitching from the sidelines by aggressively rushing the coach in what for a moment looked like a prelude to a fist-fight:


After the loss, Padgett gave his recollection of events, and they contain the excellent unspoken threat of Padgett lifting Hess bodily and lowering his head into a flushing toilet:

“If we’re out on the street, he’s running the other way just if he sees me walking by.” Probably true! Do not step to Scott Padgett, shrimpy refs of America.