SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- For the first time in the program's Div. I era, and first time since 1988, the Sacramento State men's basketball program has qualified for the postseason and will make its first-ever appearance at the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament (CIT).
Sacramento State will travel north to face Portland on Wednesday, March 18, at 7:05 p.m. in the first round of the tournament. The Hornets and Pilots played each other earlier this year at the Nest on Dec. 14 in a game that went down to the wire and saw Portland pull out an 80-75 victory.
The postseason appearance for Sacramento State will be its first since the 1987-88 team qualified for the NCAA Div. II Tournament. In addition, the postseason appearance will be just the fifth in program history (1948-pres.), as the team also qualified for the NCAA Div. II Tournament in 1959, 1962 and 1970.
Sacramento State was able to earn a CIT berth after putting forth easily the best season in its Div. I era (1991-pres.), and one of the best seasons in program history. The Hornets, who are 20-11, posted their first record above .500 in the Div. I era, won their most conference games (13) in school history, and lost on Friday night in the Big Sky Tournament semfinals to eventual conference champion Eastern Washington. In addition, the Hornets' 20 wins are the third most in school history.
Portland is currently 17-15 overall, and finished in a tie for sixth place in the West Coast Conference standings with a 7-11 league mark. The Pilots defeated Saint Mary's in the WCC Tournament quarterfinals before falling to BYU in the semifinals. Portland will be hosting a postseason game for the first time in its program's history, and this will mark the fourth time in seven years the Pilots have played in the CIT (2009, 2010, 2011).
In its seventh year of existence, the CIT consists of a 32-team field made up of non-BCS programs that were not selected to the NCAA Tournament or the NIT (ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac 12 and SEC teams are not considered). All 31 games during the tournament are played on campus sites, with future round opponents determined by results of the previous round.
Currently ranked 21st in the nation in the CollegeInsider.com Mid Major poll, Sacramento State finished in a tie for third place in the Big Sky standings with a 13-5 record, and was the only team in the conference to finish with a perfect home record (9-0) during league play. In fact, Sacramento State finished with the program's second best winning percentage in home games in school history (13-1, .929). That one loss was the nail-biting defeat against Portland.
Led by the Big Sky co-Coach of the Year Brian Katz, the Hornets finished just one game back in Big Sky standings, narrowly missing out on winning its first conference championship since 1977 and hosting the conference tournament.
What makes Sacramento State's record even more remarkable is, entering the season, the Hornets had just three winning seasons in the last 38 years, including zero during the Div. I era. The Hornets have improved their conference record every season of Katz's seven-year tenure with the program. In addition, this year's squad features the program's first conference MVP (Mikh McKinney) since 1977, and the program's first player to receive all-Big Sky recognition four times (Dylan Garrity).
The official CIT tournament website is www.2015CIT.com. Schedules, results and all other tournament information will be updated regularly. Fans can interact on Twitter using hashtag #2015CIT and following @CollegeInsider.
Opening Round: March 17-18
Second Round: March 20-21
Quarterfinal Round: March 24-25
Semifinal Round: March 30
Championship Game: April 1
Format: The CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament is a single-elimination tournament, consisting of five rounds, all games played on on-campus sites, which will be determined by seeding. Bracketing will be done geographically into multiple regions of the country to minimize travel and missed class time. Brackets will be balanced competitively within each region.
Coverage: CBS Sports Network will broadcast the semifinals on Monday, March 30, 2015 and the championship game of the CIT on Wednesday April 1. Video streaming of the game will be made available for free at PortlandPilots.com. The game will be broadcast live on the radio at KTKZ 1380 AM and streamed via hornetsports.com with Steve McElroy providing the play-by-play.
April 24, 2015 BIG SKY, RENO ANNOUNCE BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIPS AGREEMENT
March 26, 2015 McKINNEY NAMED A FINALIST FOR MID-MAJOR PLAYER OF THE YEAR
March 17, 2015 FIRST ROUND OF CIT - MEN'S HOOPS AT PORTLAND ON WEDNESDAY
March 10, 2015 BRIAN KATZ NAMED THE BIG SKY CONFERENCE CO-COACH OF THE YEAR
February 28, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS ONE WIN AWAY FROM LEAGUE TITLE AFTER WIN AT PORTLAND STATE
February 24, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS BEGINS FINAL ROAD TRIP ON SATURDAY AT PORTLAND STATE
February 21, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS BACK IN 1ST PLACE AFTER BEATING NORTH DAKOTA ON SENIOR NIGHT
February 20, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS FINAL REGULAR SEASON HOME GAME SAT. NIGHT AT 7 PM
February 19, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS IMPROVES TO 17-8 WITH A 66-59 VICTORY OVER NORTHERN COLO.
February 17, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS NORTHERN COLORADO THURSDAY NIGHT AT 7 P.M.
February 14, 2015 LATE RUN SPARKS IDAHO TO 69-58 VICTORY OVER MEN’S BASKETBALL
February 13, 2015 MEN'S BASKETBALL TRAVELS TO IDAHO FOR SATURDAY EVENING MATCHUP
February 12, 2015 LATE RUN FALLS JUST SHORT IN MEN’S HOOPS’ 64-61 LOSS AT EASTERN WASH.
February 10, 2015 FIRST PLACE ON THE LINE IN MEN'S HOOPS GAME THURS. AT EASTERN WASHINGTON
February 7, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS WINS 7TH STRAIGHT, DOWNS PORTLAND STATE, 64-60
February 4, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS POSTS HIGHEST TERM GPA IN SCHOOL HISTORY
February 2, 2015 McKINNEY NAMED BIG SKY PLAYER OF THE WEEK FOR THE 3RD STRAIGHT WEEK
January 27, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS BACK AT HOME THURSDAY NIGHT VS. MONTANA STATE
January 23, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS SEEKS FOURTH STRAIGHT WIN SATURDAY AT WEBER STATE
January 21, 2015 McKINNEY SELECTED AS ONE OF THE BEST MID-MAJOR PLAYERS IN THE NATION
January 21, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS BACK IN ACTION THURSDAY NIGHT AT IDAHO STATE
January 19, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS RANKED IN THE TOP 25 MID-MAJOR POLL FOR FIRST TIME EVER
January 19, 2015 McKINNEY RECEIVES SCHOOL-RECORD 4TH BIG SKY PLAYER OF THE WEEK AWARD
January 17, 2015 MEN’S HOOPS TAKES OVER FIRST PLACE, BEATS EASTERN WASHINGTON 90-77
January 16, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS EASTERN WASHINGTON ON SATURDAY FOR FIRST PLACE
January 13, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS BACK AT HOME THURSDAY VS. LEAGUE NEWCOMER IDAHO AT 7 PM
January 10, 2015 MEN’S BASKETBALL’S WINNING STREAK ENDS IN LOSS AT NORTHERN COLORADO
January 2, 2015 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS SOUTHERN UTAH ON SATURDAY AT 7 P.M.
December 30, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS OPENS BIG SKY PLAY AT HOME THURSDAY VS. NORTHERN ARIZONA
December 29, 2014 GARRITY NAMED BIG SKY MEN’S BASKETBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
December 27, 2014 GARRITY'S CAREER-HIGH 28 POINTS LEADS MEN'S HOOPS TO 74-49 ROAD WIN
December 24, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS PLAYS FINAL NON-LEAGUE GAME SATURDAY AT UTAH VALLEY
December 21, 2014 MEN’S BASKETBALL CAN’T FIND THE RANGE IN ROAD LOSS AT SEATTLE
December 20, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS TRAVELS TO SEATTLE FOR SUNDAY EVENING MATCHUP
December 15, 2014 McKINNEY RECEIVES THIRD CAREER BIG SKY PLAYER OF THE WEEK AWARD
December 14, 2014 BIG NIGHT FOR McKINNEY, BUT MEN’S HOOPS LOSES THRILLER TO PORTLAND
December 12, 2014 MEN'S BASKETBALL HOSTS PORTLAND ON SUNDAY AT 5 P.M.
December 11, 2014 MEN’S HOOPS REMAINS PERFECT AT HOME WITH A 73-59 WIN OVER CS FULLERTON
December 10, 2014 MEN'S BASKETBALL HOSTS CAL STATE FULLERTON THURSDAY NIGHT AT 7 PM
December 6, 2014 MEN’S HOOPS CONCLUDES ROAD TRIP WITH 74-62 LOSS AT UC IRVINE
December 5, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS TRAVELS TO UC IRVINE FOR SATURDAY EVENING GAME
December 3, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS LOOKS FOR 5TH STRAIGHT WIN THURSDAY AT ABILENE CHRISTIAN
December 1, 2014 HORNSBY SCORES A CAREER-HIGH 20 AS MEN’S HOOPS WINS FOURTH STRAIGHT
November 30, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS HOSTS UTAH VALLEY ON MONDAY; GARRITY NEARS MILESTONE
November 25, 2014 MEN’S HOOPS IMPROVES TO 3-1 WITH 97-63 VICTORY OVER BRISTOL
November 24, 2014 MEN'S HOOPS RESUMES HOMESTAND TUESDAY NIGHT VS. BRISTOL
November 19, 2014 MEN’S BASKETBALL POSTS A 74-42 VICTORY OVER SIMPSON IN HOME OPENER
November 18, 2014 SACRAMENTO STATE TO HOST 2017 NCAA MEN’S TOURNEY 1ST AND 2ND ROUNDS
November 17, 2014 MEN'S BASKETBALL TRAVELS TO UC RIVERSIDE FOR MONDAY EVENING GAME
November 17, 2014 McKINNEY LEADS MEN’S HOOPS TO FIRST-EVER ROAD WIN AT UC RIVERSIDE
November 14, 2014 MEN’S BASKETBALL FALLS IN SEASON OPENER AT #13 GONZAGA
November 12, 2014 MEN’S BASKETBALL SIGNS GUARD JEFF WU AND FORWARD JOSHUA PATTON
November 10, 2014 MEN'S BASKETBALL OPENS SEASON FRIDAY NIGHT AT #13 GONZAGA
October 23, 2014 MEN’S HOOPS PICKED FOURTH IN BIG SKY COACHES AND MEDIA POLLS
September 30, 2014 MEN’S HOOPS SEASON COMING FAST, FIRST OFFICIAL PRACTICE ON FRIDAY
September 5, 2014 MEN’S HOOPS POSTS HIGHEST TERM GRADE POINT AVERAGE IN SCHOOL HISTORY
August 15, 2014 MEN’S BASKETBALL RELEASES ITS 2014-15 SCHEDULE