The NCAA Revealed The Mis-Marked Three-Point Line In Portland Was 9 Inches Too Short

Prior to Sunday’s Elite Eight game between Texas and NC State, ESPN cameras showed the coaches from both teams speaking with NCAA officials after realizing one of the three-point lines was considerably shorter than the other.

Somehow this was not noticed over the course of four Sweet 16 games, and the Longhorns and Wolfpack chose to play the game on the mis-marked court rather than delay things to repaint, with NC State winning and advancing to the Final Four. It was truly unbelievable to see a court with one three-point line marked at the wrong distance at the NCAA Tournament level, and plenty of fans, coaches, and players rightfully torched the NCAA for another apparent example of not putting the same level of effort or attention to detail into the women’s tournament as the men’s, where it’s impossible to think this would happen and not be noticed for days.

Throughout the saga on Sunday, the NCAA did not divulge the dimensions of the incorrect line, waiting to do a full investigation and have a laser measurement to get exact figures. On Monday, we learned the one line was nine inches shorter at the top of the key than it’s supposed to be, with the explanation being that the center hole, which they measure the court lines from, was punched in the wrong spot.

While you can certainly see how that may happen, it doesn’t explain why there’s not a bit more quality control in double checking the measurements for a major tournament — or how someone didn’t go “hey, that three-point line looks way closer to the free throw line” while looking at it from the press box. I’m sure that will become a standard practice here in the future, but it shouldn’t have taken this kind of embarrassment for that to be the case.