Robert Morris isn't done just yet

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Robert Morris officially accepted a bid to compete in the tournament Sunday, and will travel to play at Indiana State in the opening round Tuesday night.

The Colonials were holding out hope for an unlikely NIT bid, but were denied when the brackets were released.

"I think this group of guys has worked hard and deserves to be able to continue their season and compete in whatever tournament will have us," Robert Morris coach Andy Toole said.

Robert Morris saw its NCAA tournament dreams end Wednesday, when it lost to Long Island in the Northeast Conference championship game for the second consecutive year.

Last year, Robert Morris declined a chance to play in the postseason, partially due to injuries sustained in its run to the NEC championship game.

The Colonials are a little banged up this year as well, but Toole cited a deeper roster as a reason they chose to continue their season.

Colonials guard Velton Jones sustained an apparent rib injury in the loss to Long Island. He played the rest of the game, but was noticeably hampered.

The Colonials will be taking on a Sycamore team that finished eighth in the 10-team Missouri Valley Conference. Indiana State (18-14) made the NCAA tournament last year, losing to Syracuse in the second round.

In its fourth season, the CIT is a 32-team tournament played on campus sites. There is no formal bracket, and matchups for future rounds will be determined after the first round ends.

No NIT for Pitt

The Panthers knew they would not be playing in the NCAA tournament for the first time in 11 years. Sunday night they learned they would not be playing in the NIT, either.

Pitt (17-16) was left out of the 32-team NIT field, and the Panthers accepted a bid to the College Basketball Invitational, a 16-team tournament with games at campus sites. Pitt will play Wofford Wednesday at Petersen Events Center.

The Panthers were in the Top 10 in many preseason polls and had Big East preseason player of the year Ashton Gibbs. They won 11 of their first 12 games, but lost 15 of their final 21.

Ray Fittipaldo contributed to this report. Sam Werner: or on Twitter @SWernerPG First Published March 12, 2012 4:00 AM


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