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Watch Bruce Pearl accidentally punch his own player in the face

Bruce Pearl during Auburn’s Jan. 2 game against Tennessee. (Getty)

Bruce Pearl is nothing if not consistent – consistently enthusiastic, to be more specific. So if you were to pick a college basketball coach who would accidentally punch his own player in the face, Pearl would probably be on the shortlist.

Or maybe that’s hindsight bias at work. Because accidentally punching a player in the face is exactly what Pearl did on Saturday.

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He gestured for a travel call, then, out of nowhere, flung his right arm violently out to the side, where it struck sophomore Jared Harper flush in the face:


That’s no way to treat your starting point guard, Bruce!

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Pearl has doing just about everything else right on the court this year, though. His Tigers won Saturday’s game 95-70 over LSU. They’re 19-2, and while they only have one top-end win (at Tennessee), they’re on top of the SEC and well on their way to the program’s first NCAA Tournament in 15 years.