For college basketball teams, getting an NIT invite is kind of like winning an all-expense paid, mid-winter trip to Detroit.
Better than nothing,kinda, but tough to get too excited about. Win the NIT, and you're officially the 66th best team in the land. Wooo!
So what, exactly, is equivalent to getting screwed by the NIT? Getting cut from your high school's AV Club? Losing your job as understudy in a community theater production of Godspell?
Whatever your soul-crushing metaphor, the UM basketball team is living it this morning. Even an inspired run to the semis of the ACC tournament this weekend wasn't enough to earn a slot at the blah NIT, which invited luminaries like Stony Brook and Coastal Carolina instead.
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The tourney apparently decided a regular season of extreme sucking, which landed the 'Canes a last-place finish in the ACC, outweighed the late season heroics that ended with a 77-74 loss to Duke on Saturday.
So the 'Canes are done for the year, but there doesn't seem to be much buzz about Coach Frank Haith being on the hot seat.
For one thing, the 'Canes have a young team that will lose only three players to graduation. They've got some young studs, like freshman Durand Scott, who played out of his mind in the ACC tourney and earned ACC all-tournament first team honors.
Also, UM basketball doesn't exactly have a passionate fan base. Sorry guys. If the football team ended the season last in the ACC, you'd be watching drunken mobs burning Randy Shannon in effigy in Coral Gables this morning.