Blog Entry

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Posted on: December 11, 2011 2:12 pm
Edited on: December 11, 2011 3:53 pm

By Jeff Goodman

Mick Cronin's actions needed to be as forceful as his words.

They weren't.

Star big man Yancy Gates, after delivering a right-hand that knocked Xavier's fellow heavyweight to the floor, received a six-game suspension. Cincinnati also suspended Octavius Ellis and Cheikh Mbodj, who stomped on Frease while he was down on the court, for six games -- and Ge'Lawn Guyn for one game.

Gates should have received -- at minimum -- a 10-game penalty, maybe even being tossed from the team for good. Cronin talked a big game after Saturday's brawl, one that was embarrassing for all parties.

"We accept full responsibility and it will be handled," Cronin said. "There is zero excuse for that in basketball. ... The fact is the guys ... represent an institution of higher learning. Xavier has been a great school for years. We're trying to cure cancer at Cincinnati. I go to school at a place where they ... created Benadryl; I think that's more important than who wins a basketball game. And our guys need to have an appreciation that they're there on a full scholarship and they better represent the institution with class and integrity. ... I just told my guys I will meet with my AD and my president and I'm going to decide who is on the team going forward. That's what the University of Cincinnati is about. Period. I've never been this embarrassed."

Cronin talked about how these kids need to appreciate the value of education, how they need to act accordingly -- or they won't ever be allowed to put on a Bearcats uniform.

He had an opportunity to follow through with his strong message in the post-game news conference -- one that was applauded by nearly everyone. (Doyel: Cronin talked the talk)

Then he opted not to follow through on his strong statements, and hit Gates, who did his best Mike Tyson impression when he sent Frease to the canvas, with just six games.

I understand that it was a mistake, one Gates would love to take back. But it's not as though Gates has been the model citizen, either. He's been suspended by Cronin previously -- and the penalty should have been more severe for this transgression.

But winning is more important to Cronin. At least that's what his actions said.

He needs Gates, especially when Big East play rolls around.

Gates will miss games against Wright State, Radford, Arkansas Pine-Bluff, Chicago State, Oklahoma and Pittsburgh.

That's a grand total of one conference game.


Since: Nov 13, 2006
Posted on: December 14, 2011 1:51 pm

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Attitude like that is why these sorts of incedents happen.

Defending a kid who sucker punched a guy who wasn't even looking his way? In Ohio the penalty for simple assault (causing harm or attempting to cause harm to another person with no weapon involved) is up to 6 months in jail and this kid got 6 games. He got off incredibly easy and should realize it. Not onlycould he have been charged he could have connected fully on the punch and permenently injured the guy and be paying for it the rest of his life.

As for the Xavier kids they also got off easy. I would have given Tu Holloway the rest of the season for his mouth (before during and after the game) alone.

Since: Nov 9, 2006
Posted on: December 14, 2011 10:46 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

goodman you are a joke. cincy handed out more punishment for its teams retaliation than Xavier did for instigating and perpetuating the incident. 6 games amounts to roughly 20% of the season. in my estimation missing one fifth of the season IS a big deal and significant punishment. where did you pull that 10 game number from? out your a$$?  seriously thats one-third of the season for a player who made a mistake and acknowledges and admits it now?

my biggest gripe here is where is the accountablity and blame that should be focused on xavier's coach? clearly he had to know the verbal exchanges that were going on and with his team up so much, why does he have his best players on the floor at the end of the game?  then he only suspends his best player for ONE game??? clearly winning and rubbing it in is more importat to Mack... and he sir, is an a-hole and his actions, not Cronin's should be put under a microscope. 

Since: Aug 7, 2009
Posted on: December 14, 2011 10:13 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Oscar Robertson on the situation: It's no big deal, I used to have whiskey bottles thrown at me.

Since: Aug 7, 2009
Posted on: December 14, 2011 10:07 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Cronin didn't promise blood. He promised nobody would play for this team unless they understood the privilege. And none of these guys have since then.

Let's take a look at  Holloway. He instigates the fight, then afterwards jumps on the scorers table and in the postgame presser he claims to be proud of his "thugs" for "zipping them up," "in body bags." 

Is Gates' suspension too short? Maybe. Is Holloways? Hell yes. 

Since: Nov 1, 2011
Posted on: December 14, 2011 8:07 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

This is what flip flop Cronin is?Yancy has had 3 incidents the last 3 years a summer league fight,went after MC's girlfriend assitant coach Savino,and the fight with X.Yancy is not a bad kid just gets no direction from the coaching staff.The staff and fans kept telling him have soft he is and he started acting out,after the summer league fight the staff was happy he showed some aggression.If Yancy would have went to Syracuse or West Virginia he would be in The NBA now.


Since: Sep 7, 2006
Posted on: December 13, 2011 6:36 pm

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

I have read a bunch of the previous posts about how Goodman has conviently given Xavier a pass on their punishment while focusing on Cincinnati.  I'm glad you guys are calling him out.  It is not a big secret in Cincinnati that Mack and Goodman are friends and drinking buddies.  You will never see a negative article from the guy about Xavier and he always has a negative slant towards Cincinnati.  Sad excuse for a journalist in my opinion...

Since: Aug 11, 2009
Posted on: December 12, 2011 2:04 pm

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

There's no he started it or that guy started. That makes it sound elementary or like siblings telling on eachother. Words are words, doesn't matter how hurtful or harsh they sound, it's still how the individual responds. Words don't make you punch someone in the face. You choose to punch them and that's just how conduct works. You choose to be who you are and act how you want. Cincinnates Gates chose to fight by throwing a clear punch that signaled he wants to fight. Xavier players were never signaling "let's fight physically", the push was a push, he decided to push him to get him off his teammate. Everyone had a choice to either stop it there or keep going. They kept going. So know punish them not for words, but for actions, that's my opinion. Holloway said some harsh things maybe, but did not physically harm anyone until the push came and Gates threw the punch. He is clean in my opinion. I'm not even a fan of the two but keep up with the world of sports. This stuff happens everywhere and sucks that it is only continuing to happen. Is it immaturity of athletes or lack of coaching and the organization of training athletes not only to compete but to have class?

Since: Oct 15, 2006
Posted on: December 12, 2011 11:54 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Holloway threw the first punch and his post game comments made things worse. In my opinion he should get 10 games and Yates should be done for the year not only did he sucker punch an Xavier player who was trying to separate players he was looking to throw another punch. The coaches did a terrible job handing out suspensions because for all the talk they did they know it is all about winning. The conference presidents need to stepup and hand out more severe punishments because this is about more than basketball and someone needs to teach that lesson to these inmature young men.

Since: Nov 27, 2007
Posted on: December 12, 2011 11:49 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Given Xavier's half-hearted response after the fiasco and Lyons and Holloway's GANGSTA comments and body bag references, it is amazing that their is no outrage over Xavier's handling of the issue.  Given that Xavier started the fight (Holloway openly admits he taunted both UC's bench and players, and that the first push was given by a Xavier player, it seems the level of malice towards Mick Cronin is a bit hypocritcal if Chris Mack is not held to the same standards.  Tu Holloway for only one game?  Oh that's right, he's the star and Xavier is undefeated and you can't afford to lose him.  I thought the punishment given to Gates and the other UC players was just and certainly not as long as the ones given to the Muskies who threw punches not only at UC players but also their coaches as well.  While Mack apologized for his players after the game, Cronin called his out.  There is not right or wrong in this.  Both teams were out of line.  To single UC out as being the villain is an outdated way of thinking.  Bob Huggins is gone.  Mick graduates his players.  For the most part, they are good guys.  Shame on you Mr. Goodman

Since: Jan 11, 2008
Posted on: December 12, 2011 11:47 am

Cincinnati's Cronin's words were just that: Words

Goodman, it is easy to be critical of Cincinnati's response.  To do so while dismissing Xavier's response is unbelievable.  Yes, Cronin came out and publicly stated he was going to be harsh.  Cincinnati was 150% tougher on their player who attempted to stomp on a Xavier player than Xavier was for a player kicking an opposing assistant coach.  They were 3 and 6 times tougher on their player who responded to what Xavier started than Xavier was on the players who did a majority of the escalating.  Nobody from Cincinnati came out and proclaimed how proud they were for their actions afterwards.  I also find it hilarious Tu was proud of his role and talked of being a gangster, yet he didn't do enough fighting to get a punishment for anything more than being an instigator.  Maybe Cronin and his bosses went easy on the Cincinnati combatants, but to accuse Cronin of valuing wins more than his comments without being twice as hard on Mack and Xavier is a blow to your ability to partially show the facts.

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