Women's National Invitation Tournament

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Women's National Invitation Tournament
WNITlogo.png
Logo of the Women's National Invitational Tournament
Sport Basketball
Founded 1998
Inaugural season 1998
No. of teams 64
Country  United States
TV partner(s) CBS Sports Network
Related competitions Women's Basketball Invitational
Founder Triple Crown Sports

The Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) is a women's college national basketball tournament with a preseason and postseason version played every year. It is operated in a similar fashion to the men's college National Invitation Tournament (NIT). Unlike the NIT, the women's tournament is not run by the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA), but is an independent National Championship. After the National Women's Invitational Tournament folded in 1996, its concept was resurrected in 1998 by Triple Crown Sports under the same name, but was changed the following season to the current name.[1] Triple Crown Sports is a company based in Fort Collins, Colorado that specializes in the promotion of amateur sporting events.[2]

Format[edit]

The WNIT started in 1998 as a sixteen team tournament. It was doubled to a thirty-two team tournament in 1999. In 2006, competing schools assumed more responsibility, hosting the early rounds of the tourney, and additional expansion was made to forty teams. At that time, schools which won their regular season conference title but were excluded from the NCAA tournament by having lost their conference tournament were awarded automatic bids. The field was further expanded in 2007 to forty-eight teams, with automatic bids awarded to each Division I conference. The tournament was expanded to its current sixty-four teams in 2010.[3]

Each of the thirty-two conferences will receive an automatic bid, with thirty-three teams selected at-large. If a conference’s automatic qualifier team declines the WNIT invitation, the conference forfeits that automatic spot, and that selection goes into the pool of at-large schools. The bids are announced on the evening of the same day that the NCAA tourney bids are made.[3]

The current, sixty-four team tournament has thirty-two first round games, followed by sixteen second-round games, eight third-round games, four quarterfinal games, two semifinal games, and the championship. All games are played on the site of higher-seeded team. The national championship game is currently carried on CBS Sports Network.[3]

Championship history[edit]

Year Champion Runner-up Venue and city
1998* Penn State 59 Baylor 56 Ferrell Center Waco, Texas
1999 Arkansas 67 Wisconsin 64 Bud Walton Arena Fayetteville, Arkansas
2000 Wisconsin 75 Florida 74 Kohl Center Madison, Wisconsin
2001 Ohio State 62 New Mexico 61 The Pit Albuquerque, New Mexico
2002 Oregon 54 Houston 52 McArthur Court Eugene, Oregon
2003 Auburn 64 Baylor 63 Ferrell Center Waco, Texas
2004 Creighton 73 UNLV 52 Omaha Civic Auditorium Omaha, Nebraska
2005 SW Missouri State  78 West Virginia 70 Hammons Student Center Springfield, Missouri
2006 Kansas State 77 Marquette 65 Bramlage Coliseum Manhattan, Kansas
2007 Wyoming 72 Wisconsin 56 Arena-Auditorium Laramie, Wyoming
2008 Marquette 81 Michigan State 66 Breslin Student Events Center East Lansing, Michigan
2009 South Florida 75 Kansas 71 Allen Fieldhouse Lawrence, Kansas
2010 California 73 Miami (FL) 61 Haas Pavilion Berkeley, California
2011 Toledo 76 USC 68 Savage Arena Toledo, Ohio
2012 Oklahoma State 75 James Madison 68 Gallagher-Iba Arena Stillwater, Oklahoma
2013 Drexel 46 Utah 43 Daskalakis Athletic Center Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
2014 Rutgers 56 UTEP 54 Don Haskins Center El Paso, Texas

* Was called National Women's Invitational Tournament

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]