With its invitation to the NIT Sunday night, the USF men’s basketball team will play in the post season for the first time since 2002. The Bulls (20-12) will face North Carolina State (19-15) Tuesday night at 8 pm in the Sun Dome.
The Wolfpack was 5-11 in the Atlantic Coast Conference regular season, but finished strong reaching the ACC tournament semifinals and winning five of their last seven games. USF finished ninth in the Big East Conference with a 9-9 record and defeated DePaul in its conference tournament opener before losing to Georgetown.
This will be the eighth NIT appearance for the USF and the 11th for N.C. State, which reached the NIT Quarterfinals in 2007. The Bulls last NIT appearance ended in a first round 98-92 loss on the road at Ball State from the Mid American Conference.
The Bulls last NIT appearance was the final game in the career of Altron Jackson, the Sarasota Riverview High graduate, who is USF's number two career scorer. The 6-6 swingman scored 30 points in that game, which enabled Jackson to go over the 2,000 point mark and finish his career with 2,017 points.
The only time USF and N.C. State met on the basketball court was in 1972 when the Wolfpack won 125-88.