OK. I cooled down for a few hours.
By "cooled down," I mean I got about 10 times more ticked off.
I just fired off a 1,100-word column in about 20 minutes. It's really easy when you're this mad and the facts are 100 percent in your corner. Keith Dambrot feels the same way.
If any of you has an activist streak, here is the contact information for the NIT.
A reader e-mailed me the Sagarin ratings for the NIT teams and also the ones whom the tournament snubbed...
- 43 - Air Force (in)
- 47 - West Virginia (in)
- 49 - Syracuse (in)
- 50 - Georgia (in)
- 51 - Alabama (in)
- 52 - Bradley (in)
- 56 - Michigan (in)
- 57 - Massachusetts (in)
- 59 - Akron (out)
- 60 - DePaul (in)
- 61 - Oklahoma State (in)
- 62 - LSU (out)
- 63 - Washington (out)
- 65 - Mississippi (in)
- 66 - Appalachian State (in)
- 67 - Wichita State (out)
- 72 - Northern Iowa (out)
- 73 - Providence (in)
- 74 - Drexel (in)
- 75 - NC State (in)
- 76 - Connecticut (out)
- 77 - San Diego State (in)
- 78 - Santa Clara (out)
- 79 - Iowa (out)
- 80 - California (out)
- 81 - Nebraska (out)
- 82 - Auburn (out)
- 84 - Utah State (in)
- 85 - Kent State (out)
- 87 - Fresno State (in)
- 98 - Toledo (in)
- 104 - Bucknell (out)
- 111 - Vermont (in)
- 119 - Marist (in)
- 159 - East Tennessee State (in)
- 161 - Austin Peay (in)
- 175 - Delaware State (in)
- 254 - Miss. Valley State (in)
Now keep in mind a regular season conference champion gets an automatic NIT bid. That does not excuse the inclusion of Utah State (9-7 in the WAC), Oklahoma State (6-10 in the Big 12), Providence (8-8 in the Big East, 18-12 overall), NC State (5-11 in the ACC, 18-15 overall), San Diego State (10-6 in the MWC) or Fresno State (10-6 in the WAC).
Now take a look at the NIT selection committee.
- Rudy Davalos, former athletic director at New Mexico
- Don Devoe, former coach at Virginia Tech, Wyoming, Florida, Navy and Tennessee
- Gene Keady, long-time coach at Purdue
- Reggie Minton, long-time coach at Air Force
- C.M. Newton, chair of the selection committee coached at Alabama and Vanderbilt.
- John J. Powers, (can't find his bio)
- Dean Smith, long-time coach at North Carolina
- Carroll Williams, former athletic director at Santa Clara
That is a ton of connections to the WAC and ACC, the conferences that consumed three of the iffy NIT bids. Also, there are virtually no mid-major connections.
I've been inundated with reader e-mails. Keep them coming.