The Women’s National Invitation Tournament is gearing up for postseason.
The tournament involves 48 teams following last year’s expansion that provided one automatic bid to every conference in the country. All games in the single-elimination format are played at the home facilities of participating schools.
Here are the probable dates for each round:
Round 1 March 19-21
Round 2 March 22-24
Round 3 March 26-28
Quarterfinals March 29-31
Semifinals April 2-3
Championship April 5
The selection of the 48 teams for the Postseason WNIT will be according to the following:
1. Thirty-one (31) spots will be filled with one team per conference. That team will be the highest-finishing team in the conference’s regular-season standings, that does not advance to the NCAA Tournament. As in the past, the teams’ record must be at or above .500.
For example, if the second-place team during the regular season does not win its conference tournament, and the top-seeded team does (and earns the NCAA berth), then the second-place team automatically will be invited to the WNIT.
If the top-seeded team after the regular season does not win its conference tournament and is not invited to the NCAA Tournament, then it will have a guaranteed spot in the WNIT.
No matter which team from a conference wins its conference tournament, the WNIT will take the next best team available. That team is determined by conference tournament seeding based on regular-season standings (or by a conference’s pre-determined by-law addressing its WNIT automatic berth).
2. The remaining seventeen (17) berths will be filled by the top teams available based on the selection criteria used in the past.
The 2008 Postseason WNIT will feature 16 first-round games, followed by 16 second-round games, eight third-round games, four quarterfinal games, two semifinal games and the championship.
The WNIT field will be announced late on the evening of the NCAA Tournament selections, on Monday, March 17.