A stunning report out of the New Orleans Times-Picayune indicates that Frank Martin and the USC basketball team might have experienced the worst NCAA Tournament selection snub of all time. The Gamecocks were a bubble team entering “Selection Sunday” so it wasn’t a total shock they didn’t get an invite. But it did throw some people off that Vanderbilt, a team USC beat head-to-head, finished below them the SEC standings, and suffered an early SEC Tournament loss, got in over them. According the the report it was the Gamecocks who got the initial call from the NCAA.
Here’s what Ron Higgins reported:
…sources told me that the person that makes the travel arrangements for NCAA tournament teams had actually called South Carolina, told the Gamecocks they had been invited, then said to hold on and they would call back in 10 minutes.
South Carolina never got the return call.
Ouch. That’s some gangster ghosting by the NCAA. It’s one thing to miss out on the tournament, but to be told you’re in and then never get a call back is a real kick to the skull. It is hard to believe something like this could happen. Then again, this is the same group that managed to let their bracket get leaked in the middle of a what seemed like a 10 hour long selection show on CBS.
The NCAA issued a statement on the snafu (via Nicole Auerbach Twitter feed):
Do better, NCAA.