THE NCAA on Tuesday suspended referee Ian Borbe, Letran coach Caloy Garcia, and Knights point guard Mark Cruz for their involvement in the ugly endgame incident that marred the Knights match against Jose Rizal University in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament on Monday at The Arena in San Juan.
Borbe has been banned for three games after allegedly threatening to beat up and cursing Cruz during a confrontation over a non-call that drew the ire of Garcia and led to the mentor’s ejection.
“For our referee, who admitted responding with profane languages, he will also be punished with suspensions on both the NCAA and UAAP and will be re-evaluated on his return,” league commissioner Bai Cristobal said.
The suspension also covers games scheduled to be officiated by Borbe in the UAAP, which employs the same set of referees.
Garcia will miss one game for his two technical fouls that led to his sending off. Cruz was also suspended for one game for charging at Borbe after the match.
Cruz’s teammates Kevin Racal, Jamil Gabawan, Rey Publico, and Rey Nambatac have been issued reprimands for also confronting the referees.
"We're just following the NCAA house rules concerning sanctions to coaches and players displaying unsportsmanlike conduct by provocative gesture meant to ignite a brawl or a fight," said Cristobal.
Cristobal has also recommended to the management committee to ban for the rest of the season the still-unidentified Letran fan who threw a foreign object at Borbe during his argument with Cruz.
"The problem though is that we're still in the process of identifying the fan," Cristobal said.