Collete Notebook: Duquesne invited to CBI tournament

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Duquesne (16-15) accepted an invitation to the College Basketball Invitational postseason tournament and will play at Princeton (20-8) at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Jadwin Gymnasium

The game will be televised nationally by HDNet.

It marks the first time since 1980 and '81 -- when the Dukes made consecutive NIT appearances -- that Duquesne will reach the postseason twice in a row, joining an NIT appearance a year ago.

The Duquesne-Princeton winner will face the winner of game between IUPUI and host Hofstra.

The 16-team CBI is a single-elimination tournament up until the best-of-three championship series, with all games played at campus sites. The event features eight first-round games (March 16-17), four quarterfinal-round games (March 22), a semifinal round (March 24), and then the championship series (March 29, 31 and April 2 if necessary).

Among the other teams is defending champion Oregon State (14-17), coached by Craig Robinson, brother-in-law of President Barack Obama. The Beavers open the tournament at home Wednesday against Boston University (19-13).

Connecticut

Men's coach Jim Calhoun said it has been difficult to convince players to come to Connecticut when other people are telling them he's about to retire. Calhoun, 67, said that's why he issued a statement last week reiterating what he has been saying since December -- that he and the school are on the verge of signing a multiyear contract, and that he plans to continue coaching at the school. Calhoun said nothing about the contract negotiations have changed, and that reports that he had been contemplating retirement were false.

Iowa

Iowa has fired coach Todd Lickliter after three losing seasons in a row. Athletic director Gary Barta announced the firing but Lickliter was not in attendance. Lickliter was 38-58 with the Hawkeyes, who had just two upperclassmen play significant minutes, and finished this season 10-22 -- their first with 20 losses. Lickliter had four years left on his contract, which pays him $1.2 million a year. He spent six seasons at Butler before succeeding Steve Alford, who left for New Mexico.

Charlotte

The 49ers fired men's coach Bobby Lutz after his 12th year was marred by a late-season collapse and a costly blunder in a first-round loss in the Atlantic 10 Conference tournament. Chancellor Philip Dubois said in a statement that the move was in the "long-term interest of 49ers basketball and the university as a whole." Lutz was 218-158 at his alma mater. After going 11-20 last season, the 49ers surged to first place in the A-10 before losing seven of eight to miss out on the NCAA tournament and NIT.

UCLA

A felony assault charge was dropped against forward Nikola Dragovic, who was accused of assaulting a man after a concert in Hollywood.

Gannon

The Gannon women defeated Millersville, 65-48, to advance to the Division II Elite Eight for the first time in school history. Tiffany Crocker had 20 points and Brittany Tabron 13 points and 17 rebounds for Gannon (36-0).

Youngstown State

Women's coach Cindy Martin resigned after two seasons with the Penguins. She went 3-57 after going 0-30 this past season.



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