Sports

Stanford men return to NIT tourney after 4-year absence

 
Stanford hosts BYU in the opening round of the NIT tournament on Wednesday at 7 p.m. Photo by Bob Drebin/isiphotos.com.

The Stanford men's basketball was rewarded for a winning season, earning a No. 3 seed in the National Invitation Tournament. The Cardinal (18-15) hosts No. 6 seed BYU in the first round on Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Maples Pavilion.

Dorian Pickens, Michael Humphrey, Robert Cartwright and Reid Travis were freshmen the last Stanford reached the postseason and it was also in the NIT. All four saw playing time off the bench. Travis recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds in the first round win over UC Davis.


Robert Cartwright /Stanford Athletics
The foursome is looking for their second NIT title, having won it in 2015, beating Miami, 66-64, in overtime at Madison Square Garden.

Stanford makes its ninth overall appearance in the NIT. The Cardinal is 18-5 in NIT play, winning the tournament three times (1991, 2012, 2015).

Stanford is 2-6 all-time against BYU, including a 1-2 mark against the Cougars at home. The two teams last met on Dec. 20, 2014, with BYU winning, 79-77, in Provo. Stanford and BYU have not previously met in postseason play.

Should the Cardinal advance, it will meet the winner of Tuesday's game between No. 2 seed Oklahoma State and No. 7 seed Florida Golf Coast. That game would be played between Match 16-19.

Stanford is one of five Pac-12 teams entered in the NIT. The NCAA tournament took three teams from the conference, including Arizona State, which finished 2-6 against the Pac-12 teams in the NIT.

The Sun Devils, tied for eighth in the conference, did beat USC and UCLA in their only encounters and enjoyed a school-record winning streak to open the season.

Joining Stanford are USC, Utah, Washington and Oregon. The Cardinal went 4-2 against them during the regular season. Stanford was 1-9 against the NCAA field.

— Palo Alto Online Sports

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