NCAA Strikes Again
How the Number 2 team in America is declined to host an NCAA Regional is beyond me. Not only is the Ole Miss men's tennis team Number 2 in America, they have been leading the nation in attendance. What these boneheads in Indianapolis do not realize is that is potentially lost revenue for them. Multiple SEC teams were allowed to host. Yet the NCAA regular season and tournament champions were denied. I don't buy be the talk about travel, because they can not back that claim up with where they sent schools like Boise State and Binghamton.
UMAA officials have hosted a regional for the past 8 years, luckily I have been able to attend quite a few of them and they are very well run. Arguably the best team we have had in those eight years is our current team. This is unreal and officials in Oxford are outraged. Notice the quote from Pete Boone below.
I can't wait to hear the total BS the NCAA puts out. I can imagine they will be receiving multiple phone calls and emails tomorrow.
OXFORD — In a turn of events that left coach Billy Chadwick fuming, fans frustrated and players shellshocked, the Ole Miss men’s tennis team will not be one of the 16 host teams for the first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament despite being the No. 2 overall seed in the country.
“It’s a very hard pill to swallow,” said Chadwick, whose Rebel team recently completed an undefeated regular season in the Southeastern Conference and has won its past 17 matches.“There’s no words that can express the boneheadedness of this decision,” said Ole Miss athletic director Pete Boone. “It’s truly beyond comprehension. ... We’re certainly going to be on the phone in the morning with the NCAA trying to find ou what the hell happened.”As expected, the Rebels treceived the No. 2 overall seed in the nation when the NCAA Tournament announced its 64-team bracket. But because of a new NCAA travel rule, the Rebels will travel to Baton Rouge for the four-team regional, which includes Ole Miss, LSU, Rice and Alcorn State.The announcement breaks the Rebels’ eight-year streak of hosting a regional.Chadwick said NCAA officials called about 20 minutes before the selection show to inform associate athletic director Lynnette Johnson that the Rebels would not host based on a rule that was put in place to help cut down on travel expenses.The explanation given was that since the regional will be held at LSU, all three other teams could presumably drive. If it were at Oxford, the Rice players would likely have to fly.But Chadwick said the small difference in travel shouldn’t negate what the Rebels have worked for all season — having home court advantage through the NCAA Tournament’s first two rounds. Ole Miss leads the nation in average announced attendance with 582 per match.“If you’re trying to grow the sport, it seems very odd that the place leading the nation in attendance that’s also the second best team in the nation doesn’t host,” Chadwick said.Ole Miss (27-2) will face Alcorn State (5-10) in the first round on May 9, with LSU playing Rice. The winners will meet on May 10, with a spot in the Sweet 16 on the line.“I don’t have any idea (how this happened),” Chadwick said. “But the only thing we can do is swallow our medicine, get tough and go down to Baton Rouge.”