March Madness referee Bert Smith collapses during USC-Gonzaga



A college basketball referee is in stable condition after collapsing on the court early in Tuesday’s Elite 8 matchup between Gonzaga and USC in Indianapolis.

Veteran official Bert Smith hit his head on the baseline and laid face up for about five minutes before being stretchered off with 15:44 remaining in the first half of the 2021 March Madness game.

Smith was alert as he was removed from the game and at one point was able to stand near the stretcher.

CBS rules analyst Gene Steratore said on the TBS broadcast that Smith was in stable condition, adding that Smith had felt “light-headed.”

“He was feeling light-headed on the court,” Steratore said.

Smith was officiating his second Elite Eight. He was replaced by an alternate, William Henderson, who had been at the scorer’s table.


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