While the Bay Area will not be represented in the 2011 NCAA basketball tournament, the college basketball postseason will not be devoid of Bay Area basketball. Cal and St. Mary's will each be playing in the 2011 National Invitation Tournament, with Cal getting a four seed and St. Mary's getting a two seed. In fact, the 2011 NIT bracket has set up a possible quarterfinal matchup between the Bears and Gaels. Additionally, for at least the first round the two teams will get to play their respective games at home.
The schools both play on Wednesday, March 16. The California Golden Bears will host the Ole Miss Rebels at 6:00 p.m. Pacific on ESPN2 and online at espn3.com. If Cal gets past the Rebels, they would face the winner of Colorado and Texas Southern. Saint Mary's will host the Kent State Golden Flashes at 8:00 p.m. Pacific, also on ESPN2 and online at espn3.com. If SMC can get past the Golden Flashes, they would face the winner of Colorado State and Fairfield. Those second-round matchups would take place sometime between March 18 and 21.
We've got the full bracket below and we'll be around with updates throughout the coming days and weeks as long as Cal and St. Mary's are sticking around.
NIT Regional #1
#1 Alabama Crimson Tide vs. #8 Coastal Carolina Chanticleers, Tuesday, 4 PM PT, ESPNU
#4 New Mexico Lobos vs #5 UTEP Miners, Tuesday 6 PM PT, ESPN2
#3 Missouri St Bears vs #6 Murray St. Racers, Tuesday 6 PM PT
#2 Miami Hurricanes vs #7 Florida Atlantic Owls, Wendesday 4:30 PM PT
NIT Regional #2
#1 Colorado Buffaloes vs. #8 Texas Southern Tigers, Wednesday, 4 PM PT
#4 Cal vs #5 Mississippi Rebels, Wednesday 6 PM PT, ESPN2
#3 Colorado St. Rams vs. #6 Fairfield Stags, Tuesday 6 PM PT
#2 St. Mary's, Calif. Gaels vs. #7 Kent St. Golden Flashes, Tuesday, 8 PM PT, ESPN2
NIT Regional #3
#1 Boston College Eagles vs. #8 McNeese St. Cowboys, Tuesday, 6 PM PT, ESPNU
#4 Northwestern Wildcats vs. #5 Wis.-Milwaukee Panthers, Wednesday, 5 PM PT
#3 Oklahoma St. Cowboys vs. #6 Harvard Crimson, Tuesday, 4:30 PM PT, ESPN
#2 Washington St. Cougars vs #7 Long Beach St. 49ers, Wednesday 7 PM PT, ESPNU
NIT Regional #4
#1 Virginia Tech Hokies vs. #8 Bethune-Cookman Wildcats, Wednesday, 5 PM PT, ESPNU
#4 Wichita St. Shockers vs #5 Nebraska Cornhuskers, Wednesday, 4 PM PT, ESPN2
#3 Dayton Flyers vs #6 College of Charleston Cougars, Tuesday, 4 PM PT, ESPN2
#2 Cleveland St. Vikings vs. #7 Vermont Catamounts, Tuesday, 4 PM PT