Less than 24 hours after Duke forward Zion Williamson sprained his knee when his shoe fell apart in the middle of a game, investigators are now looking at a second high profile shoe malfunction in as many days. Iowa coach Fran McCaffery’s tan Allen Edmonds wingtip burst apart after being hurled at a nearby referee.
Nike has claimed that Zion’s shoe mishap was an isolated incident, but this new shoe disaster has put a new spotlight on what could be an ongoing issue.
“It just doesn’t make any sense,” Fran McCaffery told OTE reporters, “I’ve thrown shoes at dozens of referees over the years and I’ve never seen a shoe just break apart on impact like that. What if this had happened while I was trying to kick a folding chair and I stubbed a toe?”
Many believe the broken shoes are simply due to shoddy workmanship caused by cutting corners in the manufacturing process, while some of the more vocal message boards are suspecting foul play.
“Two shoes in two days? And we’re supposed to believe that’s an accident???” exclaimed Blu_Devilz69 in the Duke Basketball Report’s comment section, “Yeah I’m not buying it. We need to see the chain of custody on both Zion and Fran’s shoes. No way the friction generated by the normal throwing of a shoe can generate enough heat to melt polyester threads. This was an inside job”
It is NCAA policy not to comment on ongoing investigations, but one official made a statement to OTE under the condition of anonymity: “How did Fran McCaffery throw his shoe at a ref if Iowa didn’t even have a game today?”
OTE will update this story as more details are made available.