UK At Robert Morris Preview

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UK At Robert Morris Preview

Post  Carolina Kat on Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:07 am

UK Earns NIT Top Seed, To Face Robert Morris in Opening Round
2013 NIT • Opening Round • Tuesday, March 19 • 7:30 p.m. • Moon Township, Pa. • Charles L. Sewall Center

March 17, 2013

Despite missing out on a NCAA Tournament at-large bid to defend their national championship, the Kentucky Wildcats have been selected to play in the National Invitation Tournament.

UK’s NIT bid extended the Wildcats' streak of postseason appearances in either the NCAA Tournament or NIT to 22.

Kentucky (21-11) earned a No. 1 seed and will face eighth-seeded Robert Morris on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Charles L. Sewall Center in Moon Township, Pa., outside Pittsburgh. The game will be televised live on ESPN.

Kentucky is 1-0 against the Robert Morris all-time, having defeated the Colonials inside Rupp Arena during the 1994 season by a score of 92-67.

UK is 13-6 in the NIT all-time. UK last played in the NIT during the 2009 season reaching the third round before falling 67-77 at Notre Dame.

Kentucky is making its ninth NIT appearance, having won the tournament twice, in 1946 and 1976.

Since 1992, UK is 105-28 (.789) in postseason play (SEC, NIT and NCAA).

Kentucky head coach John Calipari has used the NIT as a springboard in his previous two stops at Massachusetts and Memphis.

Overall, Calipari has been to the NIT five times in his head coaching career, reaching at least the NIT semifinals four times while winning the NIT championship in 2002 with Memphis. In three of the seasons he used the NIT as a building block for an NCAA Tournament berth the following year, including an NCAA Tournament Elite Eight appearance with Memphis in 2006 after reaching the NIT semifinals in 2005.

In Calipari’s first year at Kentucky the Wildcats reached the 2010 NCAA Tournament Elite Eight the year after UK appeared in the 2009 NIT.

The first three rounds of the NIT are hosted at the campus site of one of the participating teams. For each game, the higher-seeded team has the first option to host unless logistical circumstances preclude such an opportunity.

Kentucky is host institution for the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament to be held Thursday and Saturday in Rupp Arena.

First-round games will be played March 19 and 20. Second-round games can be played March 21-25 and quarterfinal games will be played March 26 and 27.

The 2013 Postseason NIT will be in its 76th season at New York City’s Madison Square Garden. On Tuesday, April 2, the four quarterfinal winners will square off with the Championship scheduled for Thursday, April 4.

DeWayne Peevy, UK Executive Associate AD

On Kentucky traveling for its first round NIT game…

“We did not place a bid to host the first round of the NIT due to limited staff availability to properly host a game at Memorial Coliseum. Because the University of Kentucky is hosting the NCAA second- and third-round games at Rupp Arena on March 21 and 23, the facility was not available for a first-round NIT game. We placed a bid to host both the second round and quarterfinal games at Rupp Arena if we advance.”

Carolina Kat

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