The Creighton men’s basketball team will play San Jose State on Tuesday at Qwest Center Omaha in first-round action of the College Basketball Invitational presented by Zebra Pen. The game will tip at 7:05 pm Central and will not be televised.
This is Creighton’s 14th straight postseason bid, extending a Missouri Valley Conference record, while San Jose State is in the postseason for the first time since 1996. Creighton leads the all-time series with SJSU 3-0, though the teams have not met since 1988.
Creighton (19-14) finished fourth in the Missouri Valley Conference with a 10-8 league record, then advanced to the semifinals of the State Farm MVC Tournament last week. The Bluejays are led in scoring and rebounding by forward Doug McDermott (14.2 ppg., 7.6 rpg.), who was named MVC Freshman of the Year and MVC Newcomer of the Year. McDermott was named first-team all-MVC, while Antoine Young was named second-team all-Valley after averaging 13.4 points and a league-high 4.6 assists per game. The Bluejays are coached by Greg McDermott, who is in his first season with the program.
San Jose State has a 17-15 record, including a 75-72 win at Oregon in November. The 17 wins are the most for San Jose State since 1981. The Spartans’ last game was a 58-54 loss to Western Athletic Conference champion and 23rd-ranked Utah State on March 11. The Spartans feature high-scoring guard Adrian Oliver, who ranks third nationally with 24.3 points per game. Justin Graham (14.3 ppg., 4.4 apg.) owns the SJSU record for career assists and steals and is also an all-WAC defender.
This is Creighton’s first appearance in the CBI, which is now in its fourth year. The CBI presented by Zebra Pen is a single-elimination tournament up until the Championship Series, with all games played at campus sites. The Championship Series is a best-of-three series. The event features eight first-round games, four quarterfinal round games, a semifinal round, and then the Championship Series.
The goal of the brackets is to create a competitive balance within each bracket and to minimize missed class time. The final process takes place after the NCAA Tournament field is announced.
The 16-team field consists of teams not selected for the NCAA Tournament. Teams are invited based upon performance during their conference and non-conference schedules, as well as how well the team is playing at the end of the regular season.