Southwest Missouri State will play in the NIT after being left out by the NCAA. SMS seemed to be in good shape after winning nine of its last ten games, but the selection committee gave at-large berths to ten teams with lower RPI ratings, including Mizzou. The Bears were ranked 34th in the final RPI, while Utah, UNLV, and Pepperdine all got berths with RPI’s of 50 or worse. The Bears came one win short of getting an automatic berth when they lost to Creighton in the Missouri Valley championship game. Indiana State, which won the Valley regular season title, but lost in the semis of the conference and had a lower RPI than SMS, did receive an at-large bid. SMS will host Southern Methodist Thursday in the opening round of the NIT.
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