Wichita State's dates to hold a National Invitation Tournament basketball game at Koch Arena could be limited by another big game in town.
The NCAA women's basketball tournament and the NIT overlap beginning March 18. For it to be an issue, WSU first must receive a bid to the NIT, and then earn the right to host a second-round or quarterfinal game. Should things unfold that way, WSU athletic director Eric Sexton said he believes the NIT will honor WSU's seeding and reward the Shockers with a home game.
"It is driven by seeding," he said. "I am optimistic that we have a record and seeding that will dictate that we host."
WSU's ability to host a first-round game Tuesday or Wednesday is not affected.
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Here is the potential conflict: First- and second-round games in the NCAA women's tournament will be played at Intrust Bank Arena on March 20 and 22. The NIT second-round games are March 18-21 and the quarterfinals are March 22-23.
WSU cannot host an NIT game March 18 or 19 because of setup and practices at Intrust Bank Arena. It can't host on March 20 or 22 because of the NCAA games. WSU, as a host for the NCAA games, is committed to supply personnel and equipment to Intrust Bank Arena.
"The reality is we have personnel tied up as a result of hosting the first and second rounds," Sexton said. "We picked every date we felt we could support both events in a first-class way."
WSU's bid to the NIT gave dates of March 21 for the second round and March 23 for a quarterfinal game.
"We provided dates for each of the rounds," Sexton said.
WSU must win its first-round game, and be the higher seed, in order to get a home game for the second round. The NIT bracket is announced at 8 p.m. Sunday.