The College Basketball Invitational may not be the marquee postseason tournament. It may not even be the second-best postseason tournament. But there are plenty of reasons to tune in for this unique tourney.
While not making the NCAA Tournament or the NIT is seen as a failed season for some schools, others still have plenty to play for and are motivated to earn the CBI crown.
This year is unlike any other with some big-name schools in the field, and the CBI has its own unique characteristics that make it unlike any other postseason event.
Let's take a look at the reasons why you should tune into the 2013 CBI.
Champion is Decided By Three-Game Series
The NCAA Tournament's chief attraction is in the fact that every team is one loss away from being eliminated. However, a better indication of the superior team is to play in a multi-game series.
The CBI takes advantage of that, evolving into a best-of-three series when the field has dwindled down to two teams.
This is a format that I believe the NCAA would be wise to implement in its postseason tournament. While playing out a multi-game series with all 68 teams would be exhausting for viewers and players alike, it could reap benefits if implemented in the Final Four round.
Mad props, CBI, for setting what should be a future trend in all postseason tournaments.
The Texas Longhorns Highlight the Field
For a program that has recently enjoyed a presence of 12 straight years in the NCAA Tournament, falling all the way to the CBI has to be quite embarrassing.
However, for the CBI, this is a major home run.
The Longhorns, despite their 16-17 record, are no pushover. They've beaten NCAA Tournament teams North Carolina and Oklahoma this season.
Head coach Rick Barnes can't be happy with the fact that his team was snubbed for the NCAA's and the NIT, but that's all the more reason to get his squad pumped up to dominate the field of 32 in the CBI.
Upon the start of conference tournament play, the great advantage of playing on your home court is lost for the nation's best teams.
However, in the CBI, some teams will get the chance to play at home and give their fans a final treat before the end of the 2012-13 season.
While teams such as Texas surely won't have a big fan turnout with morale down, other schools like Santa Clara, Houston, Wright State and Western Michigan should have a rowdy student section in the hopes of cutting down the nets.
The atmosphere of Final Four games and regional finals in the NCAA Tournament isn't anything to scoff at, but there's nothing like a team playing on its home court in front of its fans.
The full 2013 CBI bracket can be found here.