Saturday, December 3, 2011

Game 14 - #5 North Carolina @ #1 Kentucky - December 3, 2011

Game - #5 North Carolina @ #1 Kentucky - Sunday, December 83, 2011

Line - Kentucky -5

Result - Kentucky wins 73-72, but North Carolina back-door covers the 5-point spread

Today's game is the first Tony Greene-officiated game of the 2011-2012 season that ITGOTT has been able to watch and analyze with a discerning eye. Kentucky fans LOVE to criticize Tony Greene for his poor officiating, and some (perhaps rightly) claimed that Greene definitely did NOT have a friendly whistle for former Kentucky coach Billy Gillispie. But ITGOTT isn't about Tony Greene favoring, or disliking, any certain team - it's raising the question of whether Tony Greene is "on the take." If you read ITGOTT regularly, you know that there are just as many Tony Greene-Kentucky games where Tony Greene appears to favor Kentucky as their opponent.

And today's game wasn't about Tony Greene. It was about Ron Groover and his horrendous officiating in both directions. Groover isn't a good enough official to even BE "on the take." He's just a disgrace to officiating and the SEC.

To the game: After a frenetic first 6 minutes that saw Kentucky sprint to a lead, and UNC sprint right back, the first questionable call of the game was made.

The Charge/Block Call. It Can Go Either Way So Make Sure It Goes Your Way

Although it appeared that Ron Groover made the call (Tony Greene was the trail official and out of camera range), Groover made an atrocious-at-best charge call on Kentucky, wiping off a basket and handing the ball to the Tar Heels. It should be noted that Ron Groover, in officiating circles, is often considered the worst official in the SEC - and also, oddly, given the charge/block call he made here, an blatant Kentucky homer.

Then with 8:48 to go in the first half, Ron Groover - irrespective of if he's favoring a team or not - eschews making a call on North Carolina's PJ Hairston when he obviously rakes the arm of a driving Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. The force of Henson's arm on Kidd-Gilchrist's arm, seen clearly on replay, is so great that Kidd-Gilchrist immediately grabs him shoulder in pain, even though Hairston was clearly NOT trying to injure Kidd-Gilchrist. Attention SEC: this is why you can't have terrible officials like Ron Groover working your games. With the size, speed, and talent playing in a major league, Groover's inability to keep up will eventually result in a player getting seriously hurt. Fortunately, it appears that Kidd-Gilchrist wasn't seriously hurt here.

Swallow Your Whistle When Things Are Going Your Way

Use Calls (and Non-Calls) To Change The Momentum in Favor of the Team You Are Helping

After Kentucky had sliced a 9-point UNC lead to just 4 and seemed to have the momentum, with the capacity Rupp Arena crowd roaring its approval with just over 5 minutes to go in the first half, a scrum occurred under the Kentucky basket. Although the Cats got off 4 shots (and appeared to have been fouled on at least 2 of them), it was the Tar Heels who eventually ended up with the ball. The officiating crew of Tony Greene, Mike Nance, and Ron Groover, watching closely, chose not to call ANY of the fouls. UNC's ensuing three pushed their lead back to 7 and quelled the momentum the Wildcats had.

The Charge/Block Call. It Can Go Either Way So Make Sure It Goes Your Way

With just over a minute to go in the first half and UNC enjoying a 7-point lead, Ron Groover makes what will certainly be the worst charge/block call any official makes all year. Kentucky's Doron Lamb drives the baseline and releases a floater over UNC's Tyler Zeller, which drops through the hoop. Zeller slides in and makes contact with Lamb AFTER Lamb has not only released the shot, but also landed on his feet! Yet Ron Groover makes a charge call so egregious that even the officiating sycophant Clark Kellogg proclaims it a bad call. Again, attention SEC: Ron Groover is not a good enough official to work your games!

Then with 6:08 to go, and with a Kentucky spurt giving the Wildcats a 3-point lead, Ron Groover - sitting RIGHT under the basket and looking RIGHT at the contact - does NOT call a charge on Tyler Zeller, who charged directly into Kentucky's Darius Miller as Zeller drove down the lane. This was yet another no-doubter under any circumstance, and given Groover's charging call AGAINST Kentucky earlier in the game that was absolutely laughable, this non-call makes Groover himself just absurd.

Make The Big Call(s) At The End

With 4 minutes to play, Kentucky led by 5 - right on the number Vegas provided us.

And with 2:16 to play and Kentucky leading by 4, Ron Groover steps in with a big call on a push-off against Kentucky. Was it a bad call? No. Was it a BIG call? Yes. Did it help North Carolina? Yes. The only "on the take"-worthy comment to make is that it COULD have been ignored were Groover helping Kentucky.

Sure enough, Kentucky went on to win 73-72, but failed to cover the 5-point Vegas spread, giving UNC a back-door cover their fans will hate but bettors will love.


Kentucky wins the game. North Carolina covers the spread. Tony Greene's officiating not particularly suspicious. Ron Groover's officiating disgraceful.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Curtis Shaw Effect

Back to the chronicles of Tony Greene when ITGOTT has more time, but an officiating incident must be noted from last night's little-seen Conference USA game in Greenville, NC, between the homestanding East Carolina Pirates and the visiting UTEP Miners, coached by former big-time (Iowa State, Southern Cal, and the NBA) coach Tim Floyd.

Floyd, who, given his previous stops, probably feels like he's slumming it in rural eastern North Carolina, was ejected in what the usually-spot-on blog Ballin Is A Habit called "one of the uglier incidents" of the college basketball season, when he was ejected by Jeb Hartness. The low-quality video, and the commentary of Ballin Is A Habit, is linked here:

Here's why this is significant:

1. While the video doesn't show what Tim Floyd did to earn the first technical from Jeb Hartness, we see veteran official Steven Pyatt working to both reclaim the control that Hartness's call had removed and to calm an irate Tim Floyd. Then, as Floyd voices his frustration to Hartness as the technical free throws are administered, Hartness T's Floyd up again and runs him, clearly inciting more difficulty in a situation where it wasn't necessary. Then to top it off, the incensed UTEP assistant Phil Johnson is ALSO run. The video also shows that Steven Pyatt (working with another veteran, Bryan Kersey) position themselves between the UTEP coaches and Jeb Hartness, in what looks like an unstated message of, "Yeah, we know he messed up, but guys, just let it go..."

2. So who is Jeb Hartness? Well, we know two things.

First, from the video, we know that he appears, at least last night, to be a small man who takes umbrage at petty grievances - especially by coaches who are relatively well-known (Floyd is probably THE most well-known coach in Conference USA) - and then demonstrates that he is in charge by issuing quick, unnecessary technical fouls that do more to incite the ire of a coach than to calm an overheating in-game situation or elicit a higher level of game decorum.

Second, we know that Jeb Hartness is a relatively young official who is working his way up through the ranks to the highest levels of college basketball officiating. He has worked more games in the Ohio Valley Conference than any other conference, the conference where Curtis Shaw had been the game assignor until Shaw took the position of Director of Officials for the Big XII Conference this season. Guess what? Hartness has, for the first time, been working Big XII games. The inimitable Curtis Shaw apparently takes care of his own.

And by demonstrating rabbit ears, a thin skin, a need to visibly demonstrate his control in a game where restraint would have been better served, and issuing unnecessary technical fouls that incite problems rather than restore order, Jeb Hartness has proven that he's not only one of Curtis Shaw's "own," but that he's cut from the same unfortunate mold.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Game 51 - Tennessee @ #18 Kentucky - February 8, 2011

Game - Tennessee @ #18 Kentucky - Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Line - Kentucky -9 1/2

Result - Kentucky wins 73-61 and covers the spread

Tony Greene is confounding. Although a series of calls in the first half would have CONVINCED a viewer that the crew working tonight's game - including Tony Greene, Ted Valentine, and Mark Whitehead - were totally in the bank for Tennessee, when it came to crunch time and calls COULD have tipped the spread to Tennessee without affecting the outcome, the officials stood down and allowed the game to (apparently) end without interference.

To wit:

The Charge/Block Call. It Can Go Either Way So Make Sure It Goes Your Way

Make Calls From Out Of Position

So TWICE early in the game - with about 13 to play in the first half, and with 11 1/2 minutes to play in the first half - Tony Greene did BOTH of these things. TWICE !!! It's almost hard to believe, but within 90 seconds, Tony Greene TWICE stepped in from out of position to whistle a Kentucky player for a questionable charge.

Further, with 7:43 to play in the first half, Ted Valentine did the SAME THING, but this time he stepped in, drew attention to himself as only TV Teddy can do, and called Kentucky for a terrible - and I mean truly terrible - blocking foul. In fact, during his SEC-contract-mandated in-game interview with ESPN's Shannon Spake during the ensuing time-out, Kentucky coach John Calipari backhandedly criticized Valentine's absurd call by saying that what his team needed to do to be successful was to continue to "take charges" like they just did. A good laugh, and well-played, Coach Calipari.

Watching the game, ITGOTT was convinced that this officiating crew - if they were, in fact, "on the take" - was in the bag for Tennessee.

Yet, as Kentucky's huge 19-point first half lead dwindled to just 5 after halftime, and then ballooned back up to double digits to cover the spread, the officials didn't seem to do anything out the ordinary. No late calls to tip the spread to Tennessee. No questionable calls to alter the momentum. No calls from out of position. Not even any terrible calls, Mark Whitehead's ludicrous blocking call on Kentucky's DeAndre Liggins with about 12 minutes to play in the game and with the Wildcats leading by 16... hardly "crunch time". It was strange, and while the officials did NOT appear, in the end, to tip the spread or ultimately be "on the take," it certainly raised two important questions:

1. If Tony Greene is NOT "on the take," is he just a TERRIBLE official?

2. Must TV Teddy Valentine always preen and draw attention to himself with his officiating?

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Game 39 - Auburn @ Mississippi State - January 15, 2011

Game - Auburn @ Mississippi State - Sunday, January 16, 2011

Line - Mississippi State -10 1/2

Result - Mississippi State wins and covers easily, 85-66

Just like yesterday's game, we saw an obvious, heavy favorite get off to a great start and sprint to an easy victory, and easy cover. Mississippi State is just a far better team, especially at home in Starkville, than Auburn. Frankly, this was an easy call and not a very interesting game to watch.

When Helping A Big Favorite, Get Off To A Good Start

The officiating crew of Tony Greene, Antinio Petty, and Mike Nance wasted no time making sure Mississippi State, a double-digit favorite, spurted to an early lead when the game was just 2-0 and Antinio Petty called the always-there-but-rarely-called moving screen on Auburn's Josh Langford just 90 seconds into the game. The moving screen is a GREAT call for an official, or an officiating crew, on the take because it occurs away from the ball and most eyes are not focused there, rather focusing on the ball. Further, the physical nature of interior play in college basketball dictates that screens move often... they just aren't called often. But Antinio Petty, working with Tony Greene, called one here.

Then with Mississippi State leading 4-2 early, Tony Greene steps in with the always-fun and always-momentum-swinging "and one" play, which Dee Bost converted to extend the Bulldog lead to 7-2.

Then with the Bulldogs leading 9-3, Tony Greene calls ANOTHER "and one" call, this time converted by the Bulldogs' Kodi Augustus. Dave Neal, working for the SEC Network, openly questions the call, but it doesn't matter. Mississippi State is, as they say, much the best, and quickly that 9-3 lead is a 22-3 lead, and the Bulldogs cruise to an 85-66 victory, easily covering the 10 1/2 point spread.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Game 38 - #10 Connecticut @ DePaul - January 15, 2011

Game - #10 Connecticut @ DePaul - Saturday, January 15, 2011

Line - Connecticut -9

Result - Connecticut wins 82-62 and covers the spread

First of all, while ITGOTT doesn't advocate sports gambling, there are people who do it. And those who are in the know almost certainly snapped up Connecticut, just a 9-point favorite at desultory DePaul. Frankly, Kemba Walker and four random strangers could probably have beaten DePaul by more than 9, even if Joey Meyer, Mark Aguirre, and Oliver Purnell's wife were officiating.

But, Tony Greene was officiating - this his 38th Division 1 basketball game of the year - along with Jeff Clark and Mike Roberts.

Here's the thing on the UConn 9-point spread. Vegas lines are made to attract equal action on each side, and if there had been a TON of action on UConn at 9 (they opened as either a 10 or 10 1/2 point favorite, depending on the sports book), the spread would have gone way UP to attract more money on DePaul, such that there was an even amount of money on each team. It is believed that as little as a $3000 difference in money wagered could move a regular season college basketball line 1 point, so it's unlikely there was a rush of smart money on UConn in this game, even if there should have been.

There were two officiating moments to note in today's game.

When Helping A Good Favorite, Get Off To A Good Start

Things got off to a GREAT start for 9-point favorite UConn today when less than 5 minutes into the game, Tony Greene awarded UConn's Kemba Walker an "and one" opportunity that extended their lead from 6-2 to 9-2. First, Tony Greene was the wing official on this call, signaling the foul from out of position (which he LOVES to do). Second, Tony Greene whistled the call VERY late, seeming watching the result of the play before deciding to blow the whistle... yet ANOTHER of Tony Greene's commonly seen officiating characteristics.

Following that "and one", UConn went on a series of defensive stands involving blocked shots that could EASILY have been called fouls. The officials eschewed the whistle each time (three total blocked shots in about a minute), but DID whistle a ticky-tack foul on Jimmy Drew of DePaul about 6 1/2 minutes into the game. That series of calls and non-calls not only earned the raised eyebrow from ITGOTT, it also earned a vociferous enough reaction from DePaul Coach Oliver Purnell that he was tacked with a technical for his protests. 6 1/2 minutes into the game, and the free throws gave UConn a 17-7 lead, covering the 9-point spread early.

Then a funny thing happened. DePaul played some plucky basketball, and for the next 20 minutes of basketball, neither club was able to make a run. Neither team had momentum, but organically (without the interference of the officials), it did not appear that Connecticut was going to go on a run and break open a 10-point game and comfortably cover the 9-point spread.

Use Calls To Give Momentum To The Team You Are Helping, If They Need It

Then with 15:28 to go in the game, Tony Greene's crew went to work. Although Tony Greene did not make the call himself, a DePaul offensive possession was stifled with the phantom "moving screen" call. John Celestand, working for the Big East Network, cited the call (or the action which resulted in the call as "extra-curricular," adding absolutely nothing to the telecast other than the clarification that John Celestand is an idiot who doesn't know the definition of the work "extra-curricular."

Nonetheless, UConn did as expected, and capitalized on this momentum-shifting call. Before anyone knew it, the Huskies had extended a 13-point lead to 25 with 10 to play, and all the way to 30 with 5 minutes to play, easily covering the 9-point spread. A brief DePaul run at the end cut the margin to 20, but UConn still easily covered.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Game 37 - #18 Louisville @ #7 Villanova - January 12, 2011

Game - #18 Louisville @ #7 Villanova - Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Line - Villanova -3.5

Result - Villanova win 88-74 and covers

Tony Greene officiated his 37th NCAA Dividion 1 basketball game tonight in Philadelphia, an exciting Big East Conference match-up featuring ranked teams. #18 Louisville headed to the City of Brotherly Love to take on the #7 Villanova Wildcats. Tony Greene was working with Tim Higgins, whose officiating will be discussed in an ITGOTT entry later this week.

Keep 'Em Guessing - Make Bizarre Calls That Confuse Everybody

After Louisville spurted to leads of both 7-0 (then the Wildcats tied it up) and 16-9, it was clear that this game was going to be a frenetic, tight contest. Tony Greene made a bizarre illegal screen call against Louisville's Stephan van Treese with about 13 minutes to go in the first half. While the reason for this call was unclear (it certainly didn't look like a foul on the TiVo replay), it was nonetheless a bizarre Tony Greene call against Louisville.

The game remained an exciting, back-and-forth affair the rest of the first half, with Villanova taking a 1-point 42-41 lead into the locker room.

As the second half began, it became obvious that neither Louisville nor official Tim Higgins could keep up with the up-and-down pace, and the Wildcats began to pull away. Quickly, the 1-point halftime lead extended to 7 (with no apparent help from the officials) then to 13 halfway through the second half.

A brief Cardinal run couldn't reduce the 13-point Villanova lead enough to threaten the 3.5-point spread, and Villanova cruised to an 88-74 victory, easily covering the 3.5-point spread.

Game 37 - #18 Louisville @ #7 Villanova - January 12, 2011

Game - #18 Louisville @ #7 Villanova - Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Line - Villanova -3.5

Result -

Tony Greene officiated his 37th NCAA Division 1 game of the 2010-2011 season, a Big East Conference tilt featuring two ranked teams. Working alongside Tim Higgins - look for some Tim Higgins information in another ITGOTT post later this week - Tony Greene was working what many considered the game of the night. Villanova entered the game at a 3.5-point favorite over the Louisville Cardinals.

When Helping An Underdog, Get Off To A Good Start

The underdog Louisville Cardinals helped themselves by shooting to a quick 4-0 lead less than a minute into the game and forcing Villanova's Jay Wright to call a time-out. Then Tony Greene helped the Cards when he called a phantom foul on a Villanova player as Louisville's Giorgui Dieng drove for a bucket just over a minute into the game. Dieng converted the bucket AND the free throw, and the Cards were out to an early 7-0 lead on the road, and the Cards were off to a GREAT start on the road against a Top 10 team.

Louisville withstood a brief Villanova run and extended their lead back to 7 at 16-9 before a Villanova spurt allowed the Wildcats to take a brief lead. Back and forth they went until halftime, neither team able to take a significant lead (remember, Louisville was a 3.5 point underdog) and halftime saw the game nearly even, with Villanova holding a scant 1-point lead, 42-41, but Louisville covering the spread considering their 3.5 point underdog status.

As the second half began, it became obvious that neither Louisville nor official Tim Higgins could keep up with the frenetic pace. With no apparent officiating bias, the Wildcats were able to turn their 1-point halftime lead into a 7-point lead, then a spurt midway through the second half stretched the Cats' lead to 13.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Game 35 - Tennessee @ Arkansas - January 8, 2011

Tony Greene worked his 35th NCAA Division 1 game of the 2010-2011 season Saturday in Fayetteville, Arkansas, where the Arkansas Razorbacks topped the coach-less and turmoil-filled Tennessee Volunteers 68-65.

Although the game was televised, the ITGOTT crew was actually in person at ANOTHER college basketball game and was unable to review Tony Greene's performance.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Game 34 - #5 Pittsburgh @ Providence - January 4, 2011

Game - #5 Pittsburgh @ Providence - Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Line - Pittsburgh -6

Result - #5 Pittsburgh wins 83-79, but Providence gets the back-door cover of the 6-point spread

After a month-long break, ITGOTT is back on the officiating prowl, and the indefatigable Tony Greene was also working, officiating tonight's Pitt-Providence match-up in Providence, his 34th Division 1 game of the 2010-2011 season.

Use Calls (And Non-calls) To Stop The Momentum Of The Team You Are Not Helping

Although hot-shooting Pitt has sprinted to a 15-6 lead, Providence went on a 7-0 run (aided by a couple of inconsequential calls against Pitt) to cut the Pitt lead to 15-13. The momentum was clearly on the side of the Friars.

Then, with just over 11 minutes to play in the first half, Providence had pounded the ball under the basket in an attempt to score easily and tie the game. A Pitt player hacked Providence's Marshon Brooks as Brooks attempted a lay-up, but Tony Greene, working the baseline made no call. Even Don Orsillo, working the game for the Big East Network, noted that there was "a lot of contact; no call" as Pitt took the rebound and headed to the other end of the floor.

On their own, this Greene no-call, and Barbar's comment, may have been innocuous. But, when, 2 possessions later after Providence had extended its run to 9-0 and tied the game (and still CLEARLY had the momentum), the SAME THING HAPPENED !!! This time, with just over 10 minutes to go in the first half, Providence's Vincent Council drove the lane and AGAIN Pitt appeared to hack him and AGAIN Tony Greene, working the baseline, made no call. Amazingly, AGAIN, Don Orsillo commented that there was a "lot of contact." Yet there was no call. Orsillo then gratuitiously adds that the officials are "letting them play at the moment... lot of contact down there."

When an official makes two no-calls on the same situation within one minute (of gametime), and when the announcer comments BOTH TIMES... and when MAKING calls there might add to a teams' momentum, well the eyebrows at ITGOTT are raised.

Use Calls To Stop The Momentum Of The Team You Are Not Helping

After Pitt's shooting warms up - mostly Gilbert Brown, who seeming can't miss from distance - the Panthers turn their scant 2-point deficit into a 9-point lead with just over 2 minutes to go in the game. When Marshon Brooks drains a 3-pointer with about 90 seconds to go in the half, an official (not Tony Greene, either Gene Steratore or Ray Perone - ITGOTT couldn't tell which) whistled Pitt's Gilbert Brown for what Big East TV color commentator Ron Perry called a "touch foul." As Brooks completed the momentum-shifting 4-point play, Perry went further and branded the call "a bit of a cameo," which we think means that Brooks was acting when he fell to the ground as Perry barely touched him.

If You Need Control To Affect The Spread, Call It Tight After Halftime

With Pitt a 6-point favorite and with the Panthers having a 7-point halftime lead, officials "on the take" may want to take control of the game in the second half to affect the outcome with regards to the spread. And as the second half began, the crew of Tony Greene, Ray Perone, and Gene Steratore officiated with a much tighter whistle - both ways, although the FOUR early fouls on Pitt were noted by ITGOTT.

The LATE Whistle - Watch The Play Unfold Before Making The Call

A quick early second half spurt by the Providence Friars had cut the Pitt 7-point halftime lead to just one when the Panthers responded with basketball's great momentum-shifter... the "and one." The Panther lead was extended to 4, and the 6-point spread was once again threatened.

However, as Providence's Kadeem Batts missed an inside shot with just under 13 minutes to go in the second half, Tony Greene - working the baseline - appeared to WAIT to see if the ball went in before making the foul call against Pitt. Whether "on the take" or not, waiting to see the result of a play before making a foul call is just bad officiating, and Tony Greene was guilty of that on this call tonight.

Get Major Players On The Team You Are Not Helping In Foul Trouble

In addition to calling the game much tighter in the second half, Tony Greene called Pitt's Gilbert Brown - the Panther whose hot shooting had been such an impact on the game so far - for a hand check - his FOURTH foul - 20 feet from the basket with 12 1/2 minutes to go in the game. The potential impact of losing the game's hottest shooter was huge, and Brown was immediately pulled from the game. Given that Providence had played well, with intensity, and was playing very good defense, this call could affect not only the game but also the spread. At this point, Pitt had a 4-point lead (the spread, remember, was Pitt by 6), which although they extended their lead to 10 with 8 minutes to go, there were notable Pitt players in foul trouble for the stretch of the game.

And having so many players in foul trouble down the stretch - especially Gilbert Brown - proved to be the Panthers' undoing. Although they had a 10-point lead with 8 minutes to go (covering the 6-point spread) the tenacious Providence Friars came all the way back to take the lead - aided by some amazing offensive foul calls against Pitt.

Make The Big Call(s) At The End

An offensive push-off on Pitt's Ashton Gibbs with about 6 minutes to play resulted in a Providence three-pointer which cut the lead to 3. But then after back-to-back fouls on the Friars at the Pitt end of the floor allowed Pitt to extend the lead BACK to 6 via free throws, yet ANOTHER Friar three sliced the lead back to 3. A SECOND offensive foul call on Pitt's Ashton Gibbs - this time with about 4 minutes to and with Pitt clinging to a 4-point lead... within the 6-point spread. A THIRD offensive foul call on Pitt - this time on Brad Wanamaker with about 2 minutes to go - allowed the tenacious Providence Friars, who had cut the Pitt lead to one, to actually take the lead 73-72 with just more than 2 minutes to play. And, believe it or not, a FOURTH offensive foul call on Pitt - this one fouling Brad Wanamaker out with 2 minutes to play.

An amazing 4 offensive foul calls were called on Pittsburgh in the last 6 minutes of the game, and the 10-point Pitt lead turned into a 4-point deficit in that time period, as the Friars took an improbably 76-72 lead with 1:13 to play. It should be noted that NONE of the amazing FOUR offensive foul calls against Pitt down the stretch were called by Tony Greene.

At this point, the game's outcome was in doubt... but the 6-point spread was not. Win or lose the actual game, the Providence Friars would either win outright as an underdog or get the elusive backdoor cover for its bettors.

A couple of Providence turnovers down the stretch, a couple of big Pitt buckets, and a couple of Panther free throws at the end resulted in a 83-79 Pitt win... but a Providence back-door cover considering the 6-point spread.