New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy was just as upset as every other Rutgers fan on Monday as the Scarlet Knights were left out of the field of 68 for the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.
Despite being ranked 35th in college basketball analyst Ken Pom’s rankings, having a NET rating of 40, and picking up wins over Purdue, Northwestern, and Penn State, Rutgers was out of the tournament even as teams with lower NET ratings came through. to the Big Dance.
Murphy tweeted his dissatisfaction with the NCAA Selection Committee.
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«#35 in KenPom Rankings. Blew out #1 seed Purdue on the road and nearly beat them again two days ago. And won against several strong teams throughout the season,» Murphy tweeted.
«Rutgers should have made the Tournament. Period. Full stop.»
There will still be a lot of interest in Murphy, as Princeton and Fairleigh Dickinson have entered the men’s field. Princeton and Monmouth made the field on the women’s side. However, Fairleigh Dickinson and Monmouth are in entry games to reach the first round.
Rutgers has been able to beat out top talent this season. They defeated one of the No. 1 seeds in the tournament and the winners of the Big Ten Tournament at Purdue, 65-64, on January 2. However, they struggled for consistency against others, even losing seven of their last 10 games.
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Rutgers was not the only team rejected by the tournament. Oklahoma State was another that some believed would make it, but fell short in the eyes of the committee. UNC, however, made a bad story after losing the most games of any AP preseason No. 1 seed, also missing the tournament.
Rutgers, however, will accept an invitation to play in the National Invitational Tournament, says head coach Steve Pikiell.
«Yes, absolutely,» Pikiell said, via NJ.com. «We’re going to try to keep playing. I want Caleb (McConnell) and Paul (Mulcahy) to play as many games (as possible). I don’t want this season to end. This group has really been great and done a lot of good things for us.
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«…Maybe having the opportunity to play a home game here for those guys would be very important and I think in the right way (to end the season). I don’t apologize for playing the postseason here at Rutgers. Obviously, our Our goal at the beginning of the year is the NCAA Tournament, but we’ll have to change quickly here.»
Fox News’ Scott Thompson contributed to this report.