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The NIT is IT

So now we know. Auburn didn't get in the NCAA Tournament field for a sixth consecutive season.

The Tigers, 22-11, will get a No. 1 seed for the National Invitation Tournament. That means the team will play its games either at home or at Madison Square Garden for the semis/finals.

On the general situation: "Our team is disappointed. Our kids are disappointed. There's not a whole lot you can say to then. They were hurt. They made a heck of a run at the end and put themselves in position to get it."

On Auburn's weak strength of schedule: ``When we scheduled (George Washington), they were coming off two or three tournament appearances. People think you can just go out and schedule people. It's tough to get some teams to play you home-and-home. You don't just call up North Carolina and get a home-and-home."

On how to fix things: "I don't know how you can pick one (team) over another. I've always been for expanding the tournament. You get the right draw, you could go to the Sweet 16. There are so many good teams out there."

On if he'll talk with SEC Commissioner Mike Slive, a member of the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee, about the Tigers' plight: "Yeah. Pretty much every coach does that. Our RPI was still a little bit too high and a couple more wins would have made a big difference."

On the general situation: "Growing up, every kid wants to play in the NCAA Tournament. We still get postseason play; we still get to play another basketball game."

On the team's emotional fragility: "I'm sure a couple guys are hurt. We played our hardest and gave it all this season. To win 10 games in the SEC, I think that's enough. We still have to come in tomorrow and practice hard."

On if he watched the MSU-Tennessee game this afternoon: "I took a nap. I'm proud of Mississippi State. People said the West was terrible. Look what happened."

FOOTNOTE: Former Auburn guard Toney Douglas, who fled the Plains three years ago for Florida State, will end his final college season in the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles qualified.

Photo credit: Todd Van Emst/Auburn University


Blogger wtc said...

I'm it

5:44 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...


5:45 PM  
Blogger Cotton said...

Shame, shame.

5:46 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Bracketology is over. Thank goodness the nerds are done being on TV for another year and they can play the games.

Arizona is my only big problem with the way it came out, and maybe michigan. I guess if we had 75,000 students and sang the victors we'd be in too. blah.

St. Marys should be pissed!

Lets make a run to Madison Square!

5:48 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

Rats... I'll be arriving in NYC 12 hours too late to see Auburn win the NIT

5:48 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

100's will show up at Beard Eaves for a home game.

5:49 PM  
Blogger JgobravesHAG said...

Top 5 like usuall for me...

Footnote: Toney Douglas is amazing.

5:49 PM  
Blogger JgobravesHAG said...

Top 7.... Damn iphone

5:51 PM  
Blogger Kev1957 said...

When does the NIT begin?

5:52 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

wtc - maybe only 10s... when is AU's spring break? Is it over already?

5:53 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

nit brackets to be announced at 9 pm EDT on ESPNU

5:53 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...

Lunardi doesn't miss.

5:54 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

Kev- games start as early as Tuesday
generic schedule a

5:55 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

memo to lebo and jacobs:: it's better to lose to wisconsin or n.c. state than to beat freaking tuskeegee and alabammer state.

5:55 PM  
Blogger scott,will not,from tucson said...

i think az is shocked they made it in. i have a problem with cornell, al. state, morehead state and all of the other schools that win obscure conference championships making it in.

5:55 PM  
Blogger digger4au said...

Not unexpected but it is a shame the way this team has played for the last month and a half. NIT is more than we expected early this year.

5:55 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

I believe it is this week. But the studnets did not come when they were in school so I don't think they will come anyway.

1st round is 17th & 18th. (tues & wed) I will be there if UA plays at home.

5:56 PM  
Blogger JgobravesHAG said...

their spring break started Friday

5:56 PM  
Blogger Kev1957 said...

Is there an HABOTN NCAA pickem contest?

5:59 PM  
Blogger Tar Heel Tiger said...

would AU draw a bigger crowd in Montgomery? Too bad they can't move the game there so JayGT wouldn't have to drive so far

5:59 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

I bet all the blood that has been boiling in Kentucky is turning into seething hatred now that they see it on paper. Coach G. is in big time trouble!

5:59 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

I agree with digger, this team is doing more than I thought for this season. But, if you look at the schedule, AU lost to Dayton (in OT), Northern Iowa, and Xavier. All are in the tournament.
I've said before, it is better to go deep into the NIT than get a beat down by a 1 or 2 seed in Boise.

6:02 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I can probably make a basketball game in Auburn!

6:02 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Dickie V's head is about to explode talking about arizona on ESPN.

6:02 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

Het, we could be talking spring football now, so at least we have a team in a major sport playing in a post season tourney.

6:03 PM  
Blogger scott,will not,from tucson said...

az and wisc. only won 19 games this year. at least az beat some quality teams.

6:08 PM  
Blogger Kev1957 said...

Bobby Knight giving Auburn some luv ... he sounds more credible than some of the other guys.

6:15 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

Auburn's RPI is just too low.

The Dayton and Northern Iowa losses were the back-breakers.

6:17 PM  
Blogger Jet said...

Bob knight givin' love to the Tigers!

TurboProp says it's all good. He says it's great for Auburn's postseason to be more than the team party at Pizza Hut.

6:17 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

Recall that Dayton went 0-for-24 from the perimeter against Auburn ... and won.

6:17 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...

Found a computer. Yes!

Dang, Burnside got rocked today and finally got his first decision. He's a lot better than his record(0-1).

Despite Auburn losing their bats in the second game, and Burnside struggling, the bullpen actually turned in a decent performance.

Winning their first SEC series is pretty huge for this young ballclub!

6:18 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

wasn't that a record? ahhh that game was awful!!

6:18 PM  
Blogger Kev1957 said...

I think the "experts" fail to give enough credit to teams that improve throughout the season. You wanna finish strong.

6:20 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...

But Dayton and Northern Iowa are both dancing.

6:21 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Butler bounces LSU. I betcha.

6:21 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

As such, they would have been key wins, Peter.

6:23 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I love how Toney Douglas is getting so much love on CBS College Sports' "Bracket Breakdown".

Really? He's that good now?

6:24 PM  
Blogger AUfan said...

If they picked the 64 teams based on how they have played for the past month, I think AU would make it in. The whole body of work is much less impressive. I hate it for the seniors, I would have loved to see them have the chance to play in the NCAA Tournament.

6:27 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...


Join the HABOTN Hottie Bracket Challenge

group id: 23214
password: hatebama

6:27 PM  
Blogger Jim in Scranton said...

I just don't see how a team that lost 5 of it's final 6 get in. I don't care who they played in Nov-Dec, the tournament is in March.

The message that was sent is: we want you to schedule nonconference teams that will turn out to be good at the end of the year. Good luck figuring that out 2 years in advance.

6:28 PM  
Blogger Chris in Inverness said...

Let's build on this for the future and new building

6:30 PM  
Blogger AUfan said...

Weren't there issues with Douglas and his father disagreeing with Lebo on his role at Auburn? He is a very good talent, but it seems he has to dominate the ball and everyone else watches him play. Have I not seen him play enough, or is that a fair description?

6:32 PM  
Blogger Kev1957 said...

Thanks Peter for the bracket info, will begin working on my picks.

6:32 PM  
Blogger Chris in Inverness said...

what was the cicumstances in which Douglas left?

6:33 PM  
Blogger Chris in Inverness said...

Sorry DAU -- I axed the same...

I think it had something to do with playing point guard and not shooting guard.

6:35 PM  
Blogger ballin said...

toney douglas = AI

6:35 PM  
Blogger eaglesteeler said...

simple explanation on Douglas. Douglas' dad wanted his sone to play point guard to better his chances in the NBA. Lebo wanted him ot play shooting guard. LEbo wouldn't give in.

Douglas transferred...

6:37 PM  
Blogger Chris in Inverness said...

And doesn't he play SG at Free Shoes U?

6:42 PM  
Blogger Kev1957 said...

After all the academic fraud, Fake Student University seems appropriate.

6:44 PM  
Blogger eaglesteeler said...

no. Douglas was their PG. And a very good one at that...

6:56 PM  
Blogger michael said...

I always think it is funny every year when the prognosticators and fans alike bemoan the exclusion of the first couple of teams out. My point of view, even this year when Auburn is one of those teams, is that if you are"on the bubble," then you really don't have any room to whine, even if you think you have a better resume than a couple of teams who did make it. Just win games. Simple enough.

7:00 PM  
Blogger AUfan said...

eaglesteeler, do you think Lebo was in the wrong on the Douglas situation? I ask because player attrition seems to be a consistent problem for Lebo at AU. I've never been able to tell if it is his personality or the type of player he recruits.

7:02 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I'm now adding quotes to the main page.

7:02 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I don't think playing point guard was Toney Douglas' beef with Jeff Lebo.

I think Toney Douglas has a controlling father who, for a variety of reasons, decided he didn't like Jeff Lebo anymore.

So that's the story there.

7:03 PM  
Blogger ballin said...

Eddie Johnson was one of the best shooting gaurds AU has seen. He played point when he was on the plains. When he got to the pros, the Hawks coach said what moron would have him playing point instead of shooting gaurd.

7:09 PM  
Blogger ballin said...

GAURD - soory can't spail

7:09 PM  
Blogger Scott M. Brannan said...

i can't get over the fact that 7 Big 10 teams make the tourney. 7??????? the ACC and Big East also got 7 each.

and to think that if Miss St. doesn't knock off UT today, then there's only 2. that's the way it seemed from watching the bracket show. ridiculous.

7:11 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I think it would have been two without MSU's situation.

This league needs Kentucky to be awesome. Seriously. They (used to) get big wins that improved the entire league's RPI.


7:13 PM  
Blogger ballin said...

Slive must be a wimp

7:13 PM  
Blogger ballin said...

I say fire Slive

7:14 PM  
Blogger Scott M. Brannan said...

i can't stand Toney Douglas (or his father)!

fire Billy Gillespie!!

win the NIT!!!

and HATE BAMA!!!!

7:15 PM  
Blogger Scott M. Brannan said...

ok, maybe not being able to stand Douglas and Mr. Douglas is a bit harsh. that whole scenario still irks me.

sorry i didn't make it to the baseball games today. it was really ugly here today but no rain. i owed the wife a day at home so that's what happened. glad to see they took 2 of 3 vs. the Vols, though.

7:19 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

I do think Lebo or whomever, needs to schedule better teams. The only way to get a reputation is t play anywhere anytime. Teams that want to make a splash will go play the top teams.

7:20 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

good job on the interview Jay. I really apprecite it.

7:20 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...

I will make fun of Bama for academic cheating, but there's no way I'm casting stones at FSU for activity that is not just prevalent in college in general, I know for a fact it's gone on at most SEC institutions, including our beloved Auburn, in the very recent past. Glass house kind of thing.

Free Shoes University never gets old, though. Continue at will with that one.

7:21 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

If AU gets to play a home game, can they bring in extra lighting like ESPN does when they fball. It looks so dull inside BE on TV. Maybe we should bring candles to help.

7:22 PM  
Blogger Scott M. Brannan said...

wtc, Beard-Eaves is dull inside. it's brown, brown, brown with a few navy seats thrown in. i know what you're sayin' though.

very excited to have a new arena on the horizon. yippee. :)

7:24 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

New arena does look nice. Wish it was ready for next year.

7:26 PM  
Blogger Scott M. Brannan said...

i was looking through some of my AU memorabilia today and ran across the 98-99 SEC Champions poster. 10 years ago seems like forever. i guess it is. i'm getting old.

7:28 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I feel the same way, Scottie.

Pohlman and Porter ... doesn't seem like that long ago.

7:40 PM  
Blogger NoVaTiger said...

Bracket done.

Since I paid no attention to any team other than Auburn, I fully expect to place last.

7:41 PM  
Blogger digger4au said...

The NCAA selection in basketball has become "politically correct" instead of the best 65 teams in the nation. You got to have the Fuzzy Navals University and the Nose Pick College in there then you look for popular teams then nothing left over for good teams.

7:45 PM  
Blogger wtc said...

I'm done with my picks also. I'm ready for the tourney to start.

According to, it looks like AU would play UTmartin at home. Other sinthe bracket are UAB, South carolina, Miami FL,George Mason, Cincy, and Davidson. A round one win would put AU against UAB-Geroge mason winner.

7:54 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...

Just checked out the USA/Netherlands game on ESPN gametracker...In the stats, it had them broken down to regualar season and playoffs. Can someone explain to me when the World Baseball Classic regular season is!?!

7:58 PM  
Blogger chip chip said...

I guess if AU ever goes a perfect 16-0 in SEC play, the SEC must be so down that only the SEC tournament champ should get to go dancing.
LSU as an 8 seed? In the immortal words of Tommy Gallion, "That's crap!"

Obviously no one cares nationally if AU goes 13-0 in football either. Just as long as a "traditional power" plays through a bad conference. I'm looking your way USC, Oklahoma and Ohio State. And AU didn't just win those games in 2004, they mauled everyone but the defending NC.

When a team like AZ gets in, don't tell me pressure for TV ratings does not play a part. I guess AU is destined to be treated as the Rodney Dangerfield of college athletics when the decision is left to computers or a committee.

WDE! Go win the NIT Tigers! A trip to NY isn't such a bad consolation prize.

8:27 PM  
Blogger Wakeriderof87 said...

Jhag where ever you are. How was the Willie and Jamey Johnson concert last week? They are coming here this week and I'd like to go, but having a hard time justifying the steep ticket prices. Worth the money?

8:45 PM  
Blogger Peter Frankenschmidt said...

wake, sounds like you need a lesson from the Peter Frankenschmidt School of Not's worth the investment.

10:46 AM  

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