By Dalton Ray —
After missing the NCAA tournament, men’s basketball has accepted their NIT bid. The Cardinals (20-13) will be a No. 2 seed and face the winner of No. 3 Middle Tennessee and No. 6 Vermont.
The players reportedly voted not to play in the tournament.
Louisville just missed the NCAA tournament, listed in the First Four Out. While U of L didn’t have any bad losses — all losses to NCAA tournament teams — they didn’t register enough notable wins to set their resume apart.
The Cardinals only had top-50 wins, but still ranked in the mid-30s for RPI. Louisville is the first team ranked in the RPI top 40 to ever miss the tournament.
Of course, U of L isn’t the only notable snub playing in the NIT.
St. Mary’s (28-5) finished the season in the top 25, but like Louisville didn’t register enough big-time wins and didn’t win their conference tournament. Notre Dame (20-14) lost seven games without their star Bonzie Colson, harming their RPI ranking.
Louisville missed the tournament in 2016 due a self-imposed postseason ban. Before that, Louisville’s last NIT appearance was in 2006.
The four No. 1 seeds are Notre Dame, USC, St. Mary’s and Baylor. The Cardinals are in Baylor’s region.
You can follow Dalton Ray on Twitter @dray5477.
File photo / The Louisville Cardinal