Missouri State (25-8) will host Murray State (23-8) in the first round of the National Invitation Tournament on Tuesday night at JQH Arena, starting at 7 p.m.
The Bears are the No. 3 seed in their quadrant of the NIT, while Murray State is seeded No. 6. The game will air live on-line via ESPN3.com.
Should the Bears advance to the second round, they would play the winner of (2) Miami (Fla.) (19-14) and (7) Florida International between March 18-21 with the higher-seeded team hosting. Other first-round games in Missouri State’s quadrant include (1) Alabama (21-11) vs. Coastal Carolina (28-5) and (4) New Mexico (21-12) hosting UTEP (25-9).
As one of 13 automatic qualifiers in this year’s NIT, Missouri State is making its ninth appearance in the NIT. The Bears have previous trips to the nation’s oldest tournament in 1986, 1991, 1993, 1997, 2000, 2005, 2006 and 2007 and have reached the quarterfinals in 1986, 1993 and 2006. The Bears are 9-8 all-time in the NIT.
Tickets are available for current donors and season ticket holders beginning at 10 a.m. Monday at the JQH Arena Box Office or by phone at (417) 836-7678. Remaining tickets will go on sale to the general public later in the week. Check the Postseason Central page at MissouriStateBears.com for further details.
Earlier Sunday night, the Bears were left out as a potential at-large selection to the NCAA Tournament, despite an RPI at No. 42, Missouri Valley Conference regular-season title and runner-up finish in the MVC Tournament. Only Harvard (35) had a higher RPI among teams not selected for a 2011 NCAA Tournament berth. MSU now owns four of the top 25 RPI rankings not to be selected for the NCAA Tournament with previous oversights in 2006 (21), 2000 (34) and 2007 (36).