While there is no way of knowing how this year’s Preseason NIT will be managed – or if either Pitt or Lehigh will be named as a participant (acknowledging TMH’s comment) – here are some excerpts from the 2011 Dick’s Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off Team Manual that addressed, one year ago, the matter of team selection and format of play.
Team Selection Process
At the time of invitation, the following selection criteria were in effect to determine the teams to participate in the NIT Season Tip-Off:
Strength of schedule
Compliance with NCAA bylaws
Playing Rules and Format of the Tournament
The official NCAA Basketball Rules for the year shall govern all Tournament play. The parties agree that the NIT shall have sole authority to determine the pairings of all Tournament participants for each round as well as the sites for all Tournament contests. Each Institution shall be scheduled to play four (4) games. At each site, the two winners from each of the first round games shall play one another with the winner of that second round game advancing to the semi-finals for further competition in the Tournament. The three teams at each site that do not advance to the semi-finals will participate in third and fourth round games. These games will be played on the home campus sites of the three highest remaining seeds. Participating teams will not play any team twice and third and fourth rounds will be assigned to the most geographically compatible site possible.
Hey, it’s a rainy day and what else is there to talk about?!