Southern Illinois to sit out postseason
Southern Illinois will not participate in a postseason tournament this season, the team announced Wednesday.
Despite a 22-10 record, SIU head coach Barry Hinson chose to turn down any potential tournament invitations.
“We carefully considered a host of factors before reaching the decision to end our season,” Hinson said in the release. “Chief among them were the health and welfare of our players, as well as the budgetary implications of hosting games on our campus during spring break.”
The Salukis have several players dealing with injuries, meaning the team wouldn't be at full strength for the postseason, according to the release. The CollegeInsider.com Tournament (CIT) and College Basketball Invitational (CBI) are scheduled to begin next week, when the university goes on spring break.
“After consulting with Coach Hinson, I agree with the decision not to participate in postseason play this season,” SIU Director of Athletics Tommy Bell said in the release. “There wasn’t one over-riding factor that led to this decision, but the sum of the parts led us to determine it was in our best interest not to play.”
Southern Illinois' season officially ended with a loss to Northern Iowa in the Missouri Valley Conference tournament, concluding the program's first winning season since 2008. The Salukis last made the NCAA tournament in 2007, when they advanced to the Sweet 16.
- Andy Wittry