Baylor's Brittney Griner did just that Wednesday night, bopping a Texas Tech player in the schnozz. It's always a show-stopper when a woman goes Ron Artest, but the interesting thing came afterward.
"There's no place for that in sports," Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said. "It was ugly for women's basketball. It was ugly that coaches were on the court, that benches cleared, and I will take care of that with my team."
That was in Lubbock. A couple of days earlier and 370 miles east, Guy Morriss had a different reaction when some of his Texas A&M Commerce football players screwed up.
The school newspaper ran a story about two players being arrested on drug charges. Teammates removed every copy of the paper from racks around campus.
"I'm proud of my players for doing that," Morriss told police. "This was the best team-building exercise we have ever done."
One person holds players responsible. The other acts as if there should be no consequence to bad behavior. Which one is more qualified to be a coach?
Yeah, this isn't purely a male-female thing. Plenty of men have come down hard when their players misbehave. But why is it that you rarely read about female athletes behaving badly?
Some certainly have, of course. But even with the Title IX population boom, you don't often hear about female athletes getting busted on drug charges. And any brawling they do immediately becomes a YouTube sensation.
With men, that's just another day in the Sports Roundup.
Why the difference?
Part of it is that men are from Mars and women are from Venus. If you didn't read the book, it basically came to the startling conclusion that we're wired differently.
You can also add that Mars has better coaches. For all the natural differences, males are also more likely to be nurtured into acting like cavemen.
Exhibit A is Morriss. He coached five years at Baylor, though he obviously never made it by Mulkey's office and discussed disciplinary strategies.
It probably never occurred to Mulkey that if a couple of her players were arrested, the best way to handle it would be to steal every paper that ran the story.
Why didn't Nixon think of that? If only Haldeman and Ehrlichman could have snatched up every Washington Post after the Watergate break-in, Tricky Dick might be on Mount Rushmore today.
The latest paper caper sounds more like a fraternity prank. Morriss is acting more like a 19-year-old fraternity rush chairman than a 58-year-old college head football coach.
He says his players were just sticking up for each other. That's what real men do right? But what was the message he was sending to recruits?
Get busted at Commerce and we'll pretend it never happened!
Note to Morriss: Real men are accountable. Instead of trying to hide their mistakes, they own up to them. It's no insult to say women can also act like real men. I only wish more could play like them. Griner comes as close as anyone as I've ever seen.
The 6-foot-8 freshman is supposedly the Wilt Chamberlain of women's hoops. She had seven dunks in one game in high school, which is one more than the entire WNBA has had in 14 years. But she has the maturity you'd expect from a first-year phenom whom defenses pound every game.
Tech's Jordan Barncastle locked elbows with her Wednesday night. Barncastle was called for a foul, but Griner stormed over and punched her in the face.
Barncastle has a broken nose and Griner was suspended Thursday for at least one game, though the penalty has a chance to be longer. The story will probably run in the Baylor student newspaper on Friday unless Morriss is suddenly named the school's women's basketball coach.
Griner probably doesn't realize it now, but someday she'll be glad her coach doesn't make excuses for her. It's no coincidence that Mulkey has won a national championship and is considered one of the best coaches in America.
Morriss is 32-59, was fired at Kentucky and Baylor, and is considered one of the best coaches in Commerce, Texas. That doesn't mean Mulkey could show up and start coaching the football team. There's more to winning than having players with character, but that's where it starts.
So if you could send your kid to either coach, which would it be?
With Mulkey, you'd know women are taught to act like real men. With Morriss, you'd know men are taught to act like boys.
And if he had his way, you'd never even read about it.