Howard throws blow at Badgers coach after loss

  • Basketball recruiting insider.
  • Joined ESPN in 2014.
  • Graduate of University of Delaware.

Michigan men’s basketball coach Juwan Howard took a swipe at Wisconsin assistant Joe Krabbenhoft’s face in the postgame handshake line between the teams, setting off a brawl involving coaches and players from both sides.

Wisconsin head coach Greg Gard stopped Howard in the handshake line, leading to the two men exchanging words before being surrounded by a few players and coaches. Howard put his finger in Gard’s face and grabbed Gard’s sweater before Krabbenhoft came over in the middle of the scrum. Howard then reached out and struck Krabbenhoft’s face.

Both teams began pushing and shoving, with Michigan forwards Moussa Diabate and Terrance Williams appearing to throw punches. Wisconsin guard Jahcobi Neath also appeared to throw a punch.

“I didn’t like the timeout they called, and I’m being totally honest with you,” Howard said. “I thought it was not necessary at that moment, especially with it being a large lead. … I thought that wasn’t fair to our guys. And so that’s what happened.”

The Badgers were up 15 when Gard took a timeout with 15 seconds left.

“Apparently he didn’t like that I called the timeout to reset the 10-second call. Because we only had four seconds to get the ball over half court,” Gard told CBS. “I didn’t want to put my backups — I had all my bench guys in the game — I didn’t want to put them in that position of scrambling with only four seconds. So I took a timeout and got us a new 10 seconds and it helped them get organized and get the ball in. And he did not like that when he came through the handshake line. I’ll leave it at that and the tape will show the rest.”

Wisconsin won 77-63.

This isn’t Howard’s first incident with an opposing coach since taking over at Michigan in 2019. At last year’s Big Ten tournament, Howard was ejected after getting into a shouting match with Maryland coach Mark Turgeon. The two head coaches exchanged words before Howard began walking toward Turgeon, with Howard needing to be held back by his assistant coaches.

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