You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myAJC.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myAJC.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myAJC.com.

Georgia left out of NCAA Tournament, awaits NIT


ATHENS — It was a fitting epitaph for a season that began with big hopes. Once again, Georgia entered Sunday night hoping to pull off the upset, and once again it only ended with disappointment.

The NCAA Tournament selection committee left the Bulldogs out of the 68-team field, dealing an expected but still harsh blow to a team that began the season with big hopes.

Georgia (19-14) was hoping that its schedule strength (14th in the nation) and many close losses would sway the selection committee.

But the message seemed clear: Scheduling is great, but a team must win its share of those games too. Georgia finished 1-9 against teams in the RPI top 50, the only win coming at home over Vanderbilt.

While the achingly close losses in SEC play — twice to Kentucky and South Carolina, and also at Florida and Texas A&M — will be talked about, it may have been the nonconference portion of the season that was more costly. Georgia went 10-4, with an acceptable loss to Kansas, but also lost at Oakland and Clemson, which didn’t make the field, and at home to Marquette, which made the NCAAs.

“You can’t go back and play the games again,” Georgia junior forward Juwan Parker said after Friday’s SEC Tournament loss to Kentucky. “Did we make some mistakes in close games and could have won, should have won, yeah. But you can’t look back on them now, the results are the results.”

The last at-large team to make the NCAA field was Kansas State, which had an RPI rank of 57 and schedule strength rank of 39. Its nonconference schedule ranked 230th. Georgia’s RPI rank was 52, its schedule strength 14th, and nonconference schedule strength was 21st.

But Kansas State had four wins against teams in the RPI top 50, including two over Baylor.

Then there’s Southern California, the second-to-last at-large team selected: The Trojans had a better RPI rank (41) than Georgia, but its schedule strength was 73 and nonconference schedule ranked 139th. The Trojans did have two wins over top 50 teams, both in the top 20.

The NIT field is announced during a selection show at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU. Georgia is expected to be among the top seeds and to host a first-round game at Stegeman Coliseum on Tuesday or Wednesday night. Head coach Mark Fox will address the media in a teleconference after the selection show.

It will be Georgia’s third NIT appearance in four years. The team last made the NCAA Tournament in 2015.

The only upshot will be a chance to get a 20th win for a fourth straight season — unprecedented in program history — and for Georgia fans to see senior guard J.J. Frazier one more time at Stegeman.

When Frazier led Georgia to a senior-night win over Auburn two weeks ago, he smiled afterwards and said “hopefully it’s our last home game.” As he and others feared, it wasn’t. But last Friday when asked about playing in the NIT, Frazier said the team would put forth its best effort.

“Basketball’s fun, man,” Frazier said. “When you put your heart and soul out there and you come up short, it’s disappointing. But you’ve got to live with it.”

The post Georgia left out of NCAA Tournament, awaits NIT appeared first on DawgNation.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

Hawks trade Kelly to Rockets for cash
Hawks trade Kelly to Rockets for cash

The Hawks traded forward Ryan Kelly to the Rockets for cash considerations on Wednesday. The deal was first reported by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Kelly did two stints with the Hawks last season. He has a non-guaranteed contract for $1.6 million next season. If the Rockets release Kelly before June 30, it’s possible he could be back with...
Falcons offensive line ranked sixth-best for 2017
Falcons offensive line ranked sixth-best for 2017

Rookie Sean Harlow will get a chance to win the right guard spot. Curtis Compton/ccompton@ajc.com Pro Football Focus ranked the Falcons’ line as the sixth-best unit in 2016. The Falcons return four starters along the offensive line with the weakest link, right guard Chris Chester, off to retirement. That opens up the possibility that the unit...
Pro Football Focus: Falcons’ roster is now the NFL’s best
Pro Football Focus: Falcons’ roster is now the NFL’s best

He’s No. 2. His team’s No. 1. (Curtis Compton/AJC) Two years ago, Pro Football Focus ranked the Atlanta Falcons’ roster the NFL’s 31st-best.
John McEnroe: Serena Williams comments ‘didn’t go over big with my daughters’
John McEnroe: Serena Williams comments ‘didn’t go over big with my daughters’

Anna, Ava and Emily McEnroe were not pleased with their father’s comments regarding Serena Williams this week.  In an appearance on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” on Tuesday night, McEnroe revealed his daughters have given him some grief over saying the 23-time Grand Slam winner would be ranked “like No. 700&rdquo...
COVER 9@9: How will the Falcons ‘Brotherhood’ celebrate?
COVER 9@9: How will the Falcons ‘Brotherhood’ celebrate?

FEBRUARY 5, 2017 HOUSTON TX Atlanta Falcons cornerback Robert Alford (23) celebrates an interception run back for touchdown as the Atlanta Falcons meet the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI at NRG Stadium in Houston, TX, Sunday, February 5, 2017.
More Stories