The sixth-seeded Cougars (24-10) last earned an NIT berth in 2003 under former head coach Tom Herrion and advanced to the second round in 1995 and 1996 under legendary head coach John Kresse. They will face defending NIT champion and third-seeded Dayton (22-13) in the first round on Tuesday, March 15, at 7 p.m. (ET) before a national television audience on ESPN2 at Carolina First Arena.
"It's a real honor to host an NIT game in our city," CofC head coach Bobby Cremins said. "Dayton upset Xavier in the quarterfinals of the A-10 Tournament and they are the defending NIT champions. The big thing for us is that we get to host a home game. We have two days to sell tickets and I hope we can draw a great crowd for the Dayton Flyers."
CofC has never faced Dayton in the 101-year history of the program and never hosted an NIT game in its three previous postseason appearances. The Cougars are 2-3 all-time in the NIT.
The winner of the first-round game will advance to second-round action slated for March 18, 19, 20 and 21 with the quarterfinals on March 22 and 23.
Both semifinal games will be played on Tuesday, March 29, with the championship game on Thursday, March 31, at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The ESPN Networks, which include ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, and ESPN3.com, will once again provide coverage of all 31 games of the NIT.
The NIT was founded in 1938 by a group of New York City sportswriters. In August of 2005, the NIT LLC, which is under the umbrella of the NCAA, assumed control of the NIT. An independent at-large committee selects the field for both events and since their inception, tens of thousands of student-athletes and coaches have participated in the events. For more information visit: www.nit.org.
NIT tickets are priced at $20 for adults and $4 for college students and youth 18-years-old or younger. Tickets are general admission seating and will be available for purchase online beginning at 10 p.m. (ET) tonight at www.cofcsports.com/tickets. Fans can purchase tickets in-person at the Carolina First Arena Box Office beginning at 8 a.m. (ET) on Monday, March 14, or by phone at: (843) 953-COFC.
COUGARS ALL-TIME IN THE NIT (2-3)
1995 - College of Charleston at Providence, L, 67-72, First Round on 3/16/95 in Providence, R.I.
1996 - College of Charleston at Tennessee, W, 55-49, First Round on 3/13/96 in Knoxville, Tenn.
1996 - College of Charleston at Rhode Island, L, 58-62 (OT), Second Round on 3/19/96 in Kingston, R.I.
2003 - College of Charleston at Kent State, W, 71-66, First Round on 3/19/03 in Kent, Ohio
2003 - College of Charleston at Providence, L, 64-69, Second Round on 3/22/03 in Providence, R.I.