NIT 2013: Times, Dates, Live Streaming and TV Schedule

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NIT 2013: Times, Dates, Live Streaming and TV Schedule
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Not everybody makes the NCAA tournament field. An opportunity to play at Madison Square Garden, though, isn’t a bad consolation prize.

The National Invitational Tournament (NIT) used to be the big kahuna of postseason basketball tournaments for a time, but now it takes a back seat to host those tournament hopefuls that didn’t quite make the cut.

Luckily for viewers, the 2013 NIT tournament field is chock-full of popular major conference teams and mid-majors alike, and it should make for an entertaining tournament.

In particular, many Power-Six conference teams on the bubble hold top seeds, such as the Maryland Terrapins, Alabama Crimson Tide and defending champion Kentucky Wildcats

Looking for inside information on the NIT tournament, including dates, times, favorites and underdogs? You’ve come to the right place.  

Check out the entire NIT bracket here.


What: The 2013 NIT Tournament 

When: First three rounds played between March 19 and March 27. Semifinals will be played on April 2. Finals will be played April 4.

Watch: All NIT games will be broadcast on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3

Live Stream: All Games on ESPN3.com or WatchESPN

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

 

Schedule

First Round and Second Round

March 19-25, 2013

*All games will be played at home court of highest-seeded teams

 

Quarterfinals

March 26-27, 2013

*All games will be played at home court of highest-seeded teams

 

Final Four (Madison Square Garden)

April 2, 2013

 

Championship Game (Madison Square Garden)

April 4, 2013

Lance King/Getty Images

 

Seeding

No. 1 Kentucky vs. No. 8 Robert Morris

No. 4 Providence vs. No. 5 Charlotte

No. 3 Arizona St. vs. No. 6 Detriot

No. 2 Baylor vs. No. 7 Long Beach State

 

No. 1 Southern Miss vs. No. 8 Charleston So.

No. 4 Florida State vs. No. 5 Louisiana Tech

No. 3 BYU vs. No. 6 Washington

No. 2 Tennessee vs. No. 7 Mercer

 

No. 1 Alabama vs. No. 8 Northeastern

No. 4 Stanford vs. No. 5 Stephen F. Austin

No. 3 Denver vs. No. 6 Ohio

No. 2 Maryland vs. No. 7 Niagara

 

No. 1 Virginia vs. No. 8 Norfolk St.

No. 4 Saint Joseph’s vs. No. 5 St. John’s

No. 3 Iowa vs. No. 6 Indiana St.

No. 2 Massachusetts vs. No. 7 Stony Brook

 

Must-Watch Game: No. 1 Kentucky Wildcats at No. 8 Robert Morris

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Yes, you read that correctly. Kentucky will be a "home team" against Robert Morris in the Colonials' arena.

Since the NCAA Tournament's first weekend will be taking place in Rupp Arena, the Wildcats will be traveling to Moon, Pa., for their first-round matchup. Robert Morris' arena holds 3,056 seats. Rupp Arena, by comparison, has a capacity of 23,000.

This Wildcat team may be one of the biggest draws in NIT history. John Calipari’s squad boasts three potential first-round picks in Archie Goodwin, Alex Poythress and Willie Cauley-Stein.

Based on pure talent alone, Kentucky should have an easy road to New York City; unfortunately, chemistry and motivation might get in the way.

They were on the right side of the bubble until it all fell apart at the SEC Tournament, where the Wildcats failed to show up in a 64-48 loss to Vanderbilt.

Sports Illustrated's Stewart Mandel comments on the bizarre situation for the No. 1 vs. No. 8 matchup:

Sounds like there could be a Cinderella situation worth watching in the NIT. There's no doubt it will be an interesting scene at Robert Morris University.

 

Prediction: No. 1 Southern Miss Eagles Win NIT

Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports

Usually the NIT’s top major conference teams are more deflated from not making the NCAAs instead of motivated for the NIT tournament.

With that theory in mind, I’m taking Southern Miss, who lost out on a NCAA bid in the Conference USA final to Memphis.

While most of these NIT entrants choked their way into this field, the Eagles went on an inspiring run in the C-USA tournament to get to this position.

Which NIT Team Is Your Pick To Win It All?

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The Eagles are led by dynamite scorer Dwayne Davis, who is averaging close to 28 points in his last five games. He’ll pace the Eagles attack all tournament and provide a spark for this squad. Let’s not forget Jonathan Mills, who sets the tone defensively and was named to the C-USA All Defensive Team this season.

The Eagles have the talent and the good fortune of home court for a couple rounds to surprise the tournament field.

For anybody doing an NIT Tournament pool, Southern Miss would be an under-the-radar selection with some credibility. 

 

Mike Shiekman is a Breaking News Writer for Bleacher Report. Follow his sports musings and random life observations on Twitter.

 

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