April 2, 2014
NEW YORK (AP) -- Markus Kennedy had 21 points, including the clinching three-point play, and SMU rallied from 13 down in the second half to beat Clemson 65-59 Tuesday night, sending Hall of Fame coach Larry Brown into the NIT championship game in his old backyard.
Nic Moore added 13 points and Nick Russell scored 10 for the Mustangs (27-9), who will play Minnesota or Florida State for the title Thursday night at Madison Square Garden. Brown, the only head coach to win both an NCAA and NBA championship, now has a chance to add the National Invitation Tournament to his extensive resume.
The 73-year-old Brown, who was born in Brooklyn and grew up in nearby Long Beach, is old enough to remember when the NIT was the premier college basketball tournament around. He has directed quite a turnaround in two seasons at SMU, snubbed by the NCAA tourney on Selection Sunday.
SMU will now play for the NIT Championship Thursday night, Apr. 3 against the winner of the Minnesota/Florida State game. Tipoff is slated for 6:00 p.m. CT and the game will be televised on ESPN. Tickets for Thursday night's championship game are available online at smumustangs.com/tickets.
SMU will be hosting a NIT Championship game-watching party at Moody Coliseum Thursday night. Fans wanting to attend must have a ticket to the StateFarm College Slam Dunk and 3-Point Championships. Tickets for the event are available online now.
Scenes from April 1 at Madison Square Garden
Click to see slide show.
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