Report: Gophers to play Western Kentucky, St. John's in NIT Tip-Off


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Richard Pitino's Golden Gophers will reportedly get some national attention when they play in the NIT Season Tip-Off tournament in November.

ESPN's Andy Katz reports Minnesota will face the St. John's Red Storm the day before Thanksgiving (Wednesday, Nov. 26) in the semifinal round of the tournament at Madison Square Garden – the same building the Gophers won the NIT tournament title in last season.

The NIT Season Tip-Off has historically had 16 teams play out a bracket-style tournament. The new format, which Katz says isn't yet set in stone, will feature eight teams.

"They (the NCAA) really were holding onto this format that frankly, most teams at the high level of Division I did not want to participate in anymore," Katz said, via the Star Tribune. "[Teams] wanted to make sure they had a guaranteed setup to get to a neutral site."

Gonzaga will play Georgia in the other semifinal, with the winners meeting in the championship.

Amelia Rayno says Minnesota is currently scheduled to play one home game associated with the tournament, but that could change. Katz says that opponent will be Western Kentucky.

The schedule on still says Minnesota will play two home games, Nov. 17 and Nov. 22, before traveling to New York City.

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