This is a new one.
Oakland basketball fans took the art of free-throw distraction to new heights Saturday. They made a significant sacrifice in the process. A group of men, presumably Oakland students, stood shirtless under one of the baskets at OU Credit Union O'rena during Saturday's game Cleveland State. By midway through the second half, many of them had shaved heads.
Oakland basketball shared video of how they got there on social media. With Cleveland State's Tevin Smith at the line in the second half, one fan stood smiling while his buddies put hair clippers to work. He stared directly at Smith while his friends shaved his head.
— Oakland Men's Basketball (@OaklandMBB) February 3, 2024
Judging by the haircuts of the guys around him, he wasn't the first to undergo the process.
Smith hit his first throw. He missed his second to cut Oakland's lead to 61-43.
It's unclear how effective the strategy was. Cleveland State had a poor day at the line, shooting 8 of 13 (61.5%) in an 83-71 Oakland win. But the Vikings aren't good free-throw shooters in general. They entered Saturday shooting 66.3% from the line on the season.
Effective or not, these guys successfully made their mark in the annals of free-throw distraction lore.