The last ‘minute’ of Marshall vs. Wichita State took 18 minutes in real time

SAN DIEGO, CA - MARCH 16: Jon Elmore
SAN DIEGO, CA - MARCH 16: Jon Elmore /

Marshall vs. Wichita State set a new record for longest last “minute” in March Madness.

Game time in sports is notorious for not really abiding by the rules of, well time. One minute left to play can mean anything from something resembling an actual minute to, well, something much closer to 20.

The last minute of No. 13 Marshall’s upset over Wichita State took 18 minutes and 26 seconds, which is frankly absurd by any stretch of the imagination. A fair amount of that time was spent considering a wrong call, choosing not to overturn it, despite 1,000 angles that showed it was Wichita State’s ball. There were fouls, of course, timeouts, naturally and ad breaks for days. And because Wichita State refused to say die, we all stayed glue for all 18-plus minutes. It was everything you love about college basketball and hate at basketball condensed to a minute of play and miserably stretched out to 18 minutes of real time.

Deadspin, which has apparently done the research on this, announced that 18 minutes is a new record for length of the final minute — at least going back to 2012. The previous record was held by Oregon-Wisconsin, who spent a leisurely 15 minutes and seven seconds in their final “minute.”

Wichita State’s upset loss is going to mess up a lot of people’s brackets. Those still thriving after Arizona’s early exit on Thursday may be taking a hit in another region. Meanwhile, Villanova fans are likely rejoicing that they have one less low seed on their path to the Final Four.

The rest of Friday’s early slate lacked the excitement — or at least, the excitement of a close-game before it was sucked out of Marshall vs. Wichita State. Purdue did not come to play, beating California State University Fullerton, 74-48, while Texas A&M pulled off the win over Providence, 73-69.

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