March 18, 2013
Stanford Cardinal (18-14, 9-9 Pac-12)
Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks (27-4, 16-2 Southland)
Tuesday, March 19, 2013 8 p.m. NIT First Round
Stanford, CA Maples Pavilion (7,233)
Tournament Seeds: Stanford (4), Stephen F. Austin (5)
Series History: First Meeting
Radio: KNBR 1050 AM (PBP: John Platz, Analyst: Drew Shiller)
KZSU 90.1 FM (PBP: Andrew Santana, Analyst: Lucas Prokopiak)
TV: ESPN2 (PBP: Dave Flemming, Analyst: Bill Walton)
The Opening Tip
Stanford (18-14, 9-9 Pac-12) begins defense of its Postseason NIT crown on Tuesday night, welcoming Stephen F. Austin (27-4, 16-2 Southland) to Maples Pavilion for an 8 p.m. tip. The Cardinal has been tabbed a No. 4 seed in its region and will host the No. 5 seed Lumberjacks in the tournament's opening round.
Tuesday's game can be heard live on KNBR 1050 AM and Stanford's official athletics website, www.gostanford.com, featuring the chemistry-rich duo of John Platz (play-by-play) and Drew Shiller (analyst). KZSU 90.1 FM also has coverage. The game is televised on ESPN2, with Dave Flemming (play-by-play) and Bill Walton (analyst) on the call.
About The 2013 Postseason NIT
The 76th edition of the Postseason NIT boasts a strong 32-team field. Included in the mix are 21 teams with at least 20 wins and 10 automatic qualifiers who won their regular-season conference title. The field also includes two other Pac-12 teams, with No. 3 seed Arizona State joining No. 6 seed Washington. The first three rounds are played at campus sites across the country, with the semifinals and championship game played at Madison Square Garden in New York on April 2-4.
Stanford Against The 2013 Postseason Fields
Of the 32 teams selected for the NIT, Stanford faced three teams and compiled an 2-2 record (1-1 vs. Arizona State; 1-0 vs. Denver; 0-1 vs. Washington) ... Of the 68 teams selected for the NCAA Tournament, Stanford faced nine teams and notched a 3-10 record (2-0 vs. California; 1-1 vs. Oregon; 0-1 vs. Arizona; 0-1 vs. Belmont; 0-1 vs. Minnesota; 0-1 vs. Missouri; 0-1 vs. NC State; 0-2 vs. Colorado, 0-2 vs. UCLA) ... Of the 16 teams selected for the CBI, Stanford did not play any of the participating teams ... Of the 32 teams selected for the CIT, Stanford faced one team (1-0 vs. Northern Iowa).
Scouting Stephen F. Austin
Stephen F. Austin (27-4, 16-2 Southland) owns the best overall record in this year's NIT field. The Lumberjacks were awarded an automatic bid after winning the regular-season conference title. Stephen F. Austin is 1-3 all-time in postseason play (0-1 NCAA, 1-2 NIT) ... The Lumberjacks are making their third NIT appearance, most recently suffering an 80-60 loss at Massachusetts in 2008. Back in 1987, Stephen F. Austin defeated James Madison 70-63 before dropping a 54-48 decision at Arkansas-Little Rock ... Stephen F. Austin boasts the nation's top defense, allowing only 51.0 points per game while limiting foes to 38.0 percent shooting (eighth in the nation). The Lumberjacks have held their opponents to fewer than 70 points in 63 consecutive games ... In addition to its strong defense, Stephen F. Austin's +7.3 rebounding margin ranks 12th in the country. The Lumberjacks average 65.1 points and force 15.3 turnovers per game ... However, Stephen F. Austin shoots only 60.6 percent from the foul line ... Be sure to watch: Taylor Smith (15.6 ppg, 9.3 rpg, nation-leading 69.2 percent FG, 89 blocks), Antonio Bostic (10.7 ppg, team-best 75.0 percent FT, 45 steals), Desmond Haymon (10.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 36.8 percent 3FG), Hal Bateman (7.1 ppg, 174 assists) ... Stanford and Stephen F. Austin will be matching up for the first time on the hardwood.
Stanford All-Time In The Postseason
Stanford is 35-20 all-time in 23 postseason appearances overall, including a 12-4 record in six NIT appearances. The Cardinal has claimed two NIT championships, winning in 1991 and 2012. Stanford owns a 21-15 record in 16 NCAA Tournament appearances and captured the 1942 title. Stanford posted a 2-1 mark in its only season of CBI competition.
Searching For Rare NIT Title Repeat
Stanford will attempt to capture its second straight Postseason NIT title, after defeating Minnesota 75-51 in last year's championship game. The only other programs to claim back-to-back NIT championships are St. John's (1943, 1944) and South Carolina (2005, 2006).
Projected to finish fourth in the Pac-12 preseason poll, Stanford tied for sixth at 9-9. The Cardinal finished non-conference play at 9-4, including wins over Northern Iowa and Northwestern. In conference play, Stanford swept California and upset then-No. 10/12 Oregon 76-52 on Jan. 30. Stanford's national ratings include: RPI (No. 77), Sagarin (No. 48).
Cardinal Has Performed Well In March
Stanford is now 15-9 in games played during the month of March under head coach Johnny Dawkins. Last year, the Cardinal has won a school-record seven games in March, including its final five contests en route to capturing the 2012 NIT championship.
Takeaways From The Arizona State Game
Jahii Carson scored five of his game-high 34 points in overtime while Carrick Felix added 19 points and 12 rebounds, as Arizona State held off Stanford 89-88 in the opening game of the Pac-12 Tournament ... The game featured six ties and five lead changes. Arizona State, which led by nine in the first half, went in front 77-69 with 1:10 to play before Aaron Bright's four-point play tied the game at 79-79 with 38 seconds remaining ... Stanford's last overtime loss was a 73-65 setback against No. 5/5 Kentucky back on Nov. 25, 2010. The Cardinal had won its last three overtime games ... Stanford knocked down a Pac-12 Tournament record 15 three-pointers, its most since a 15-33 effort at Arizona on March 7, 2009 ... Aaron Bright scored a season-high 27 points on 10-21 shooting while matching his career-high total of six three-pointers ... Aaron Bright completed a four-point play at the end of regulation, converting Stanford's only free throw attempt of the game ... Previously, the Cardinal was 3-3 from the charity stripe in a loss at Siena back on Nov. 17, 2007 ... Dwight Powell finished with 23 points, notching his ninth 20-point game. Powell added nine boards, four assists and two blocks in a career-high 43 minutes ... It was the first time two Stanford players scored at least 20 points in the same game since Feb. 16, 2012 against Oregon State, when Chasson Randle scored 24 and Aaron Bright 20 ... The Cardinal has now made at least one three-pointer in 387 consecutive games, dating back to an 0-6 performance against Purdue in the John Wooden Tradition on Nov. 24, 2001.