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March 11, 2012

Gophers Awarded NIT Bid

The Minnesota men's basketball program today learned that they will play La Salle in the opening round of the National Invitation Tournament on Wednesday, Mar. 14 at Tom Gola Arena in Philadelphia. Tipoff is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPN2. The game can also be heard statewide on the Gopher Radio Network, including 1500 ESPN in the Twin Cities.

Sixth-seeded Minnesota will head into the contest with a 19-14 record following a 1-1 showing in the Big Ten Tournament. The third seed La Salle Explorers are 21-12 out of the Atlantic 10 Conference.

"We are very grateful to get this opportunity to take part in the 75th annual NIT," said head coach Tubby Smith. "We have been playing well of late and this gives our young team the opportunity to experience what postseason basketball is all about."

The Gophers have an overall record of 18-11 in NIT games, most recently losing to Maryland in the first round of the 2008 tournament. Minnesota has won two NIT titles, in 1993 & 1998. The 1998 title has since been vacated.

Minnesota is 1-0 all-time against La Salle, a 92-87 victory during the 1965-66 season.

The National Invitation Tournament is the oldest tournament in college basketball. The NIT was started in 1938. It was the first national postseason collegiate tournament to be played in the country.

NIT SCHEDULE

First Round Games -

Tuesday, March 13 and Wednesday, March 14

Second Round Games -

March 15, March 16, March 17, March 18 & March 19

Quarterfinal Games -

March 20 & March 21

Semifinal Games -

Tuesday, March 27

Championship Game -

Thursday, March 29



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