The return of Bishop Gorman against Liberty thanks to the stopwatch


Over an hour after Bishop Gorman beat Liberty 97-95 in a double-overtime thriller at Gorman Gym on Tuesday night, a group of basketball junkies were standing in a circle on the court and still talking about it not far from the place where John Mobley de Gorman sank. the winning move.

This game was so good.

Across the gym, Gaels coach Grant Rice held court with confidants in the stands after the nine reigning state champions rallied by 18 points to go undefeated.

There was a lot to unbox the big comeback and frenzied end, including the experimental use of a stopwatch and the game being played in two 16-minute halves instead of the usual four eight-minute quarters.

“Sixteen minutes (with limited timeouts) is a long time, so we tried to pick our spots with our press and pressure,” Rice said after the momentous victory put Gorman’s record to 10-0. “It was by no means desperation… so you must love the stopwatch.”

Rice said that after the National Federation of State High School Federations approved a 35-second clock for the 2022-2023 season, he received the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association’s blessing to introduce a 30-second version to the Tarkanian Classic.

The clock was not expected to have a dramatic impact on fast teams like Gorman and Liberty. But after the Patriots took the lead and their second playmaker Dedan Thomas Jr. – son of the former UNLV starting goaltender of the same name – was fouled with 4:10 remaining and Liberty still ahead of nine, the Patriots were unable to milk the clock.

When Gorman stepped up the pressure, Liberty’s reserve guards struggled to adjust to the accelerating pace. It was these developments and some long-range fire that paved the way for the Gaels’ turnaround.

But give the stopwatch the biggest help.

“It changes the game, and this is the way it should be played,” said Rice, who predicted the NIAA would align with other state governing bodies in embracing the clock.

Around the horn

– Few tears were shed when TJ Otzelberger resigned as UNLV basketball coach to take the same position in Iowa State after two split seasons. But his Cyclones are 12-0 and sit ninth with wins over Xavier and Creighton and a 20-point blowout against rival Iowa, who must have Rebels fans to reach the Kleenex.

The State of Iowa hosts No.1 Baylor on New Years Day.

– Any local businesses interested in a unique NASCAR sponsorship opportunity ahead of the Pennzoil 400 weekend March 4-6 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway might want to contact Brandon Brown.

The Xfinity series pilot broke his silence last week on the “Let’s Go Brandon” euphemism during a media tour. He said he struggled to attract financial support after NBC pit reporter and Las Vegas resident Kelli Stavast misinterpreted a crowd chant denigrating President Joe Biden as encouragement for Brown after his first career victory in October.

– Ohio State defensive tackle and Bishop Gorman product Haskell Garrett was named 2021 Polynesian College Football Player of the Year after leading the Rose Bowl-related Buckeyes with 5½ sacks and being selected in the First Team All-Big Ten.

Raiders quarterback and former Oregon star Marcus Mariota was the first recipient of the award in 2014.


Former UNLV quarterback (and former ESPN broadcaster) Kenny Mayne, commenting on a Twitter post showing a time lapse day on Earth seen 36,000 miles away via satellite:

“Now I understand better the relative importance of a Sonics vs. Kansas City-Omaha Kings game in my youth. Time flies.

Contact Ron Kantowski at [email protected] or 702-383-0352. To follow @ronkantowski on Twitter.