#1) Tennessee (18-14) vs. #8) Savannah State (21-11)
Date: Tuesday, March 13th
Time: 8:00 PM EDT
The University of Tennessee Men’s basketball team was picked to finish 11th in the SEC in 2011-12. But a late season push that saw them pick up victories over nationally ranked Connecticut and Florida (twice) and a season-ending victory over eventual SEC Tournament Champion Vanderbilt wasn’t enough to give the Vols an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. Nevertheless, the Vols and Head Coach Cuonzo Martin have accepted a bid to compete in the National Invitational Tournament (a.k.a. NIT). This will be the 12th NIT Appearance in school history and will be the first since 2004 when the Vols lost to George Mason in the first round.
The Vols will host Savannah State at Thompson-Boling Arena on Tuesday night in a first round matchup. Savannah State won the regular season MEAC Championship and finished with a 21-11 record. They were upset by the MEAC number 8 seed Hampton in the 2nd round of their post season tournament. They earned an automatic bid to the NIT by winning the MEAC Regular Season Championship. During the regular season they lost to Wisconsin, Georgetown, Georgia Tech, Indiana, Butler and Arkansas.
The last time the Vols hosted a NIT game at the Assembly Center and Arena was back in March 2003 versus Georgetown. Yes, that was the Buzz Peterson led Baller Vols. That squad couldn’t take advantage of a rockous home crowd of 3,011 fans and lost to the Hoyas 60-70.
TICKETS: All tickets for the Vols vs. Tigers will be $10 and all seats will be General Admission.