"We're very disappointed. Our players deserve to be in the NCAA Tournament", Enfield said. The Irish and Pirates will be meeting for the first time in men's basketball on Tuesday night (Notre Dame is 5-0 all-time against teams from the MEAC). The top-seeded Irish will host No. 8 Hampton (19-15) in first round on Tuesday or Wednesday.
Be that as it may, the Irish - when as healthy as they appear to be right now - are one of the better teams in the country and will likely be considered a strong favorite to win the NIT by both the national media and the oddsmakers in Las Vegas. The Irish lost in the regular season finale to #1 Virginia and then were eliminated from the ACC Tournament in the quarterfinal round by Duke.
Colson, this year's ACC preseason player of the year returned with a vengeance after missing 15 games with a broken foot, and Farrell was out five games with an ankle injury. For all these reasons, Baylor missed the tournament for the first time in five years. Should the Irish beat the Pirates (19-15, 12-4 MEAC), they will take on the victor of No. 4-seed Penn State and No. 5-seed Temple, though the time of the second-round game is not yet decided. Notre Dame looked like a sleeper last week in the A.C.C. tournament and a team that could make noise in the N.C.A.A. tournament. Still, I think Hampton has the offense to keep up here so I'm leaning that way. Spoiler: UConn is going to make it!
Brey said he told the team about past experiences from the NIT.
The numbers throughout the season, as they often are with the Huskies, were staggering. "I had a team that was really devastated it didn't get in [in 2005] and they lost to Holy Cross here". They lost seven in a row, like this group, and got all the way back to NY. The losses that mounted as a result of those injuries were ultimately what kept Notre Dame out of the Big Dance and instead playing in the NIT.
During the selection broadcast, Bruce Rasmussen, Creighton's athletic director, who served as the selection committee's chairman, confirmed that Davidson's win over Rhode Island on Sunday knocked Notre Dame out of the tournament.
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