OU No. 2 Seed in NIT Season Tip-Off

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma

Aug. 19, 2008


NORMAN, Okla. - The Oklahoma men's basketball team has been named the No. 2 seed in the 2008 Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off and will host the four-team South Regional Nov. 17-18.  The bracket and schedule for the 16-team event were released Tuesday.

The Sooners will host No. 16 seed Mississippi Valley State in first-round action Monday, Nov. 17, at 8 p.m. CST on ESPNU.  An NCAA tournament team last year, Mississippi Valley State finished 17-16 and went 12-6 in the Southwestern Athletic Conference.

If OU beats Mississippi Valley State, it will play the winner of the Nov. 17 (5 p.m. CST) game between No. 5 seed Davidson and No. 12 seed James Madison on Tuesday, Nov. 18, at 8:30 p.m. CST on ESPN2.  The South Regional consolation game will tip at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 18.

Davidson, which lost to eventual national champion Kansas by two points in the Elite Eight of last year's NCAA tournament, posted a 29-7 overall record in 2007-08 and went 20-0 in Southern Conference play.  The Wildcats return preseason first-team All-American Stephen Curry, the nation's leading returning scorer (25.9 ppg).  James Madison finished with a 13-17 record last season and posted a 5-13 mark in Colonial Athletic Association games.

 2008 NIT Season Tip-Off Bracket

If the Sooners win the South Regional, they'll advance to New York City for games during the week of Thanksgiving (Wednesday, Nov. 26, at 6 or 8 p.m. CST and Friday, Nov. 28, at 12:30 or 2:30 p.m. CST) on ESPN2.  Those contests will be played at Madison Square Garden.

No. 1 seed Purdue is host of the North Regional (also features Georgia, Loyola Chicago, Eastern Michigan), No. 3 seed Arizona will host the West Regional (UAB, Santa Clara and Florida Atlantic) and No. 4 seed Boston College will host the East Regional (St. John's, Cornell and Loyola [Md.]).  OU is on the same side of the bracket as Arizona, making for a potential semifinals matchup in New York.

The NIT Season Tip-Off, which began in 1985, has evolved to an enhanced format this year that guarantees every team four games.  The 12 teams that do not advance to New York will play third- and fourth-round games Nov. 24 and 25 on the home campus sites of the three highest remaining seeds.

Oklahoma owns a 4-4 NIT Season Tip-Off record and last participated in the event during its 2001-02 Final Four season (beat Central Connecticut 66-44 before losing at Michigan State 67-55).

2008 Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off Schedule
(All times Central)

Monday, Nov. 17 (South Regional, Norman, Okla.)
5 p.m.: No. 5 seed Davidson vs. No. 12 seed James Madison
8 p.m.: No. 2 seed Oklahoma vs. No. 16 seed Mississippi Valley State (ESPNU)

Tuesday, Nov. 18 (South Regional, Norman, Okla.)
5:30 p.m.: Consolation Game
8:30 p.m.: Championship Game (ESPN2)

Wednesday, Nov. 26 (New York, N.Y.)
6 and 8 p.m.: Semifinals (ESPN2)

Friday, Nov. 28 (New York, N.Y.)
12:30 p.m.: Consolation Game (ESPN2)
2:30 p.m.: Championship Game (ESPN2)