Pennsylvania HS hoops coach knocks down ref amid late-game rant

A Pennsylvania high school basketball game got ugly Tuesday night. Just how ugly is hard to tell given various videos of the incident.

Neshaminy High School varsity coach Jerry Devine made contact with a referee, sending him flying backward to the floor, as he protested a charging call in the final minute of a 49-42 loss to Pennsbury High School.

In a six-second cellphone video of the incident obtained by The City of Basketball Love, it looks like Devine head-butts the referee. You can see that below:

In a longer clip from local station WBCB1490, it is less clear what happens. In the following video, the home announcers seem to brush it off as minor contact and Devine waves at the fallen ref as if to suggest he flopped.

And if you want to go full Zapruder, you can check out this slowed-down version of the cellphone video, where it does seem like Devine’s head goes to the side of the referee’s head and any contact made is chest to chest.

Regardless, it’s not a good look for a guy entrusted with coaching impressionable teenagers to lose his composure with officials — especially considering he also teaches history and algebra at the school.

Apparently the Neshaminy School District agrees. Philly.com reports that Devine, who has been with the school for 10 years, has been placed on administrative leave from both coaching and teaching duties pending a review of the situation.

Here’s the statement from the school district’s Facebook page:

"The administration at Neshaminy School District is conducting a thorough review of an incident at the varsity basketball game Tuesday evening (January 5, 2016) involving coach Jerry Devine and a referee. Appropriate action was taken at the game following that incident, and further measures may follow depending on the outcome of that review. As this is a personnel matter, we will not be able to comment on the specifics of any possible disciplinary action until that review process is complete.

Mr. Devine has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of that review for both his teaching and coaching positions.

The athletic program at Neshaminy places the values of fair play and sportsmanlike conduct above all. We expect our coaches and staff to teach and uphold those principles, while acting in a professional manner at all times."