Rebels Return to Postseason, Host NIT First Round Wednesday

OXFORD, Miss. -- After a four-year drought, the Ole Miss basketball team is returning to postseason play, as the Rebels received a bid to the National Invitation Tournament Sunday, as announced on the ESPN2 selection show. Fourth-seeded Ole Miss (20-12) will face No. 5 seed Appalachian State (25-7) in the opening round Wednesday at 7 p.m. CT at Tad Smith Coliseum.

Tickets for the NIT game will be $15 for adults and $4 for students. For tickets, call the Ole Miss Ticket Office at 662-915-7167. There will be general parking with no charge.

A victory Wednesday would advance the SEC Western Division champion Rebels to a March 19 meeting with the winner of South Region No. 1 seed Clemson and No. 8 East Tennessee State in the second round. The host school in the second round and quarterfinal, which will be March 21, will be based on the higher seed. The NIT Final Four is March 27 and 29 at New York's Madison Square Garden.

Ole Miss is back in postseason play for the 13th time in the program’s history and the first time since earning an NCAA Tournament berth in 2002. That season capped a streak of five straight years with postseason action.

The Rebels are playing in their seventh NIT and have reached the quarterfinals twice, including their last appearance in 2000 when they fell at N.C. State in the quarters. Ole Miss also reached the quarterfinals in 1983 before losing at DePaul.

The Rebels have a 6-6 record in the NIT. The Rebels have a 5-1 record in home games in the tourney, and have won four straight contests in Oxford dating back to the 1983 NIT.  The lone loss in an NIT home game was a 61-59 defeat to Virginia Tech in the 1982 second round.

The Rebels have an overall postseason record of 9-12 in the program’s history. Previously, Ole Miss had played in six NITs (1980, 1982, 1983, 1987, 1989, 2000) and six NCAA Tournaments (1981, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002), The Rebels’ best postseason result came in the 2001 NCAA Tournament when the team reached the Sweet Sixteen before falling to eventual national champion Arizona.

Ole Miss made its first postseason appearance in 1980, reaching the NIT second round. That season began a string of four straight years with postseason play, including the program’s first NCAA berth in 1981. The Rebels also saw postseason action in the 1987 and 1989 NITs. 

 


 

 

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