NIT bracket 2019: Tournament schedule, dates, times, locations for the 32-team field

It can be a stepping stone to bigger things and also a a way to earn some postseason success after not making the Big Dance — the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) pits 32 teams, including the 10 teams that won their conference regular season championships as automatic qualifiers.

The 22 at-large berths will be handed out on Sunday with the first three rounds of the NIT played at campus sites. The semifinals and championship game played at Madison Square Garden. But before the entire field is announced and set, let’s take a look at how you can watch and follow the entire NIT this year.

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2019 NIT key dates

First Round: Higher seed hosts —  March 19-20
Second Round: Higher seed hosts — March 21-25
Quarterfinals: Higher seed hosts — March 26-27
Semifinals: Madison Square Garden — April 2
Championship: Madison Square Garden — April 4

All times Eastern

2019 NIT first round schedule

Upper Left Bracket
(1) UNC Greensboro vs. (8) Campbell — March 19, 7 p.m.
(4) Davidson vs. (5) Lipscomb — March 19, 7 p.m.
(3) Georgetown vs. (6) Harvard — March 20, 7 p.m.
(2) North Carolina State vs. (7) Hofstra — March 19, 7 p.m.

Lower Left Bracket
(1) Indiana vs. (8) St. Francis (Pa.) — March 19, 7 p.m.
(4) Providence vs. (5) Arkansas — March 19, 9 p.m.
(3) Furman vs. (6) Wichita State — March 19, 7 p.m
(2) Clemson vs. (7) Wright State — March 19, 7 p.m.

Upper Right Bracket
(1) Alabama vs. (8) Norfolk State — March 20, 7 p.m.
(4) Colorado vs. (5) Dayton — March 19, 11 p.m.
(3) Xavier vs. (6) Toledo — March 20, 7 p.m.
(2) Texas vs. (7) South Dakota State — March 19, 9 p.m.

Lower Right Bracket
(1) TCU vs. (8) Sam Houston State — March 20, 9 p.m.
(4) Nebraska vs. (5) Butler — March 20, 9 p.m.
(3) Memphis vs. (6) San Diego — March 19, 8 p.m.
(2) Creighton vs. (7) Loyola-Chicago — March 19, 9 p.m.

Click here for the complete 2019 NIT bracket.

Ten schools earned automatic berths by way of their regular season conference titles, and not being selected to the NCAA TournamentCampbellHarvardHofstraLipscombLoyola-ChicagoNorfolk State, St. Francis (Pa.), Sam Houston StateSouth Dakota StateWright State.  

NIT rule modifications

The NIT continues to experiment with rules in its tournament. Some changes in the NIT have eventually seeped its way into the mainstream of college basketball, such as the 30-second shot clock and four-foot restricted-area arc. 

The NCAA playing rules process operates on two-year cycles, rule changes can be approved this May, and could be in effect for next season. There will be four rule modifications for the 2019 tournament:

The 3-point line will be extended by approximately 1 foot, 8 inches to the same distance used by FIBA for international competition (22 feet, 1.75 inches).  The free throw lane will be widened from 12 feet to 16 feet, consistent with the width used by the NBA.   
The shot clock will reset to 20 seconds after an offensive rebound instead of the full 30 seconds. Team fouls will reset at the 10-minute mark of each half for the purpose of determining free throws and one-and-one free throws will be eliminated.  Teams will shoot two bonus free throws after the fifth team foul of each 10-minute segment.  Additionally, teams will be awarded two bonus free throws after the second team foul committed under two minutes remaining in each half if that foul occurs before the fifth team foul of the segment. In each overtime period, team fouls will reset, and teams will shoot two free throws beginning with the fourth team foul or the second team foul committed under two minutes remaining if that comes before the fourth team foul of the overtime period.

Read this article from its original source at https://www.cbssports.com/college-basketball/news/nit-bracket-2019-tournament-schedule-dates-times-locations-32-team-field/