With a new head coach and excitement building for the new season, the Fresno State Bulldog men's basketball squad learned they will face the third-seeded Stanford Cardinal on either November 14 or 15 in Palo Alto's Maples Pavilion as a part of the 2011 Dick's Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off.

Joining the Dogs and Cardinal in the West Region bracket are seventh-seeded Colorado State and Southern Methodist University. The winner of the Fresno State-Stanford will face the winner of the CSU-SMU contest while losers of the opening games will play each other in the West Consolation game to be held November 15 or 16.

"Being in such a competitive pod will help us as we prepare for the upcoming season," first-year Bulldogs' head coach Rodney Terry said. "This exposure and opportunity to play these kinds of opponents are critical to so many different areas of our program."

This marks Fresno State's third appearance in the preseason NIT and first since 2001 when the Dogs advanced to Madison Square Garden for the tournament's semifinals.

In their five previous preseason NIT games, the Bulldogs own a 3-2 a record - which includes wins over Michigan State, USC and Montana State.

Two-time champion Syracuse headlines the 2011 NIT Season Tip-Off field, announced today by NIT selection committee chair C.M. Newton.

The 27th annual tournament will also feature Albany (America East), Arkansas-Pine Bluff (SWAC), Brown (Ivy), Florida International (Sun Belt), George Mason (Colonial), Manhattan (MAAC), Monmouth (Northeast), Oklahoma State (Big 12), Oral Roberts (Summit), Texas-San Antonio (Southland) and Virginia Tech (ACC).

The first- and second-round doubleheaders will all be played Nov. 14-16 on the campuses of the four highest seeds - No. 1 Syracuse, No. 2 Oklahoma State, No. 3 Stanford and No. 4 Virginia Tech,. The winners of the preliminary rounds advance to the semifinals, which take place in New York City's Madison Square Garden Nov. 23. The consolation and championship games will be played November 25.

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fresno state bulldogs, fresno state basketball, fresno county, fresno, sports, jason oliveira
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