NIT 2018: Penn State will play Temple as No. 4 seed

NIT 2018: Penn State will play Temple as No. 4 seed

Notre Dame takes on Hampton, Baylor plays Wagner and Saint Mary's faces Southeastern Louisiana in the first round. The higher seeded team in the first three rounds hosts each matchup before the tournament moves to Madison Square Garden for the semis and finals.

That's where Penn State made its final push for NCAA Tournament consideration.

The Nittany Lions have a heavy Philadelphia-area contingent, beginning with coach Pat Chambers, a graduate of Episcopal Academy.

The Nittany Lions lost, 78-70, to Purdue University in the semifinals of the Big Ten tournament on Saturday.

USC will play UNC Asheville on Tuesday night in its first appearance in the NIT since 1999.

With Colson back, Notre Dame beat Pitt and Virginia Tech then played Duke tough in the first half during the ACC Tournament last week.

Credit Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports
Credit Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Hampton defeated Florida A&M in the conference quarterfinals and North Carolina A&T in the semifinals.

As such, the only way Notre Dame can win a tournament championship is if they win the NIT. The Pirates almost earned an NCAA bid, but lost to North Carolina Central in the MEAC championship on Saturday, 71-63.

NIT games are being televised by ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3.

Temple will visit Penn State in an opening round NIT game, Wednesday at 8 p.m. (ESPNU).

"We put ourselves in position where we can continue to play basketball", he said.

The MEAC is 3-12 all-time in the National Invitation Tournaments with wins coming in 2006 (Delaware State), 1995 (Coppin State) and 1974 (Maryland-Eastern Shore). The Golden Eagles take on No. 7 seed Harvard (18-13, 12-2) and the victor will move to face either No. 3 seed OR (22-12, 8-10) OR No. 6 seed Rider (22-9, 15-3).

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