Travel costs figure into Duquesne's postseason plans

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Duquesne will learn late Sunday night if a postseason basketball tournament is in the cards this season.

The Dukes fell in the first round of the Atlantic 10 tournament Tuesday to Massachusetts but could get an invitation to the College Basketball Invitational next week.

Athletic director Greg Amodio said the team will weigh the costs and benefits if invited.

"We're kind of in a wait-and-see pattern. We're going to take a look and wait to see what the opportunities are," Amodio said. "If they make sense across the board, then we'll move forward from there."

The 16-team field will shake out late Sunday night after the announcement of the NCAA tournament field and then the NIT.

Duquesne (16-15, 7-10 A-10) slipped to 108 in the ratings percentage index Friday, but the CBI typically makes offers to teams anywhere from around 80 to 130 in the RPI. What complicates an offer though, is that teams only get home games by paying a guarantee. Duquesne has no intention of paying a guarantee, Amodio said, which would mean a road game.

That, he said, would force a decision based not just on the postseason opportunity for the team but travel costs and time away from school as well.

Duquesne has played in the CBI the past two years, and coach Ron Everhart hopes the opportunity is there again.

"I'd like to think, from my standpoint ... I owe it to our seniors who have done so much for us and all our kids who have poured their heart and soul into this season to try and get them a chance to play in the postseason," Everhart said.

"We've played a very, very difficult schedule this year. We certainly could've done better, but we could've done worse, too."

The players said they'd be ready.

"I haven't heard of anything about another postseason tournament, but if we do get invited we'll all be ready to play and playing our hardest," said sophomore point guard T.J. McConnell.

Jenn Menendez: or 412-263-1959.


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