2019 ROMAN CBI FIELD ANNOUNCED
March 17, 2019
PRINCETON, N.J.. – The 16-team field for the 2019 Roman College Basketball Invitational is finalized. The 12th annual CBI will begin with one First Round game on Tuesday, March 19 and the remaining seven First Round games on Wednesday, March 20.
For a complete bracket, CLICK HERE
The CBI is a single-elimination tournament up until the best-of-three Finals, with all games played at campus sites. After the First Round games, the Quarterfinal Round will take place on Monday, March 25, followed by the Semifinal Round on Wednesday, March 27 or Thursday, March 28. Prior to the semifinals, the remaining teams will be re-bracketed. The Finals series is a best-of-three in which one team will host two of the three games. Those games will be played on April 1, April 3, and April 5.
Past CBI champions include Tulsa, Oregon State, VCU, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Santa Clara, Siena, Loyola Chicago, Nevada, Wyoming, and North Texas. Teams from nearly every conference have participated in the event. Twenty-seven teams have used the CBI to springboard to the NCAA Tournament the following year, while another 19 have gone on to the NIT.
ESPN is again the official television home of the CBI. ESPNU will televise each game of the best-of-three Championship Series.
Brown Bears (Head Coach: Mike Martin, Ivy League)
Mike Martin was named the Ivy League’s Coach of the Year after guiding the Bears to 19 wins, matching the school record for victories in a season set by the 2008 squad, who also earned a CBI berth…senior captain Obi Okolie is the second Brown player to be named the Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year…a second-team All-Ivy selection, his 1,027 career points rank 28th in Brown basketball history…sophomore forward Tamenang Choh led the Ivy League in rebounding (8.7 rpg) and garnered second-team All-Ivy honors…he has posted 10 double-doubles and also leads the Bears in assists with 97…sophomore guard Desmond Cambridge, a USBWA first-team All-District I pick, was the Ivy League’s fourth leading scorer (15.7 ppg), ranked second in blocked shots (1.7 bpg) and scored 30 or more points three times.
Cal Baptist Lancers (Head Coach: Rick Croy, Western Athletic Conference)
The Lancers secured 16 wins as a program in their first-year of a four-year transition process to NCAA Division I status – the most wins by a first-year team that is an RPI counter (playing four or less non-Division I opponents on its schedule)…Grand Canyon previously held the mark with 15 wins in 2013-14…the 2018-19 Lou Henson Award Mid-Season Watch List included California Baptist sophomore guard Milan Acquaah, was also named first-team All-WAC and WAC Newcomer of the Year…senior Jordan Heading will take claim of the school-record for most games played in a Lancer uniform in the CBI opener…he is currently tied at the top of the list with 127 games played…Heading also holds the school record with 228 career 3-pointers made and sits seventh in assists (340) and eighth in points (1,474) in program history.
Central Michigan Chippewas (Head Coach: Keno Davis, Mid-American Conference)
Central Michigan has posted back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since 1965-66, 1966-67 and advanced to the MAC Tournament title game….under head coach Keno Davis, the Chippewas have posted five consecutive seasons with a .500 record or better, the program’s longest such streak since the early 1970s (1969-75)…senior guard Larry Austin Jr. was named second-team All-MAC, as well as earning a spot on the MAC All-Defensive Team…senior guard Shawn Roundtree Jr. received third-team All-MAC honors…the two combine to form the MAC’s highest-scoring guard tandem…senior guard Larry Austin Jr. broke the Central Michigan single season records for steals (76) and assists (200) in 2018-19.
Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (Head Coach: Cliff Ellis, Sun Belt Conference)
Senior Zac Cuthbertson, a second-team All-Sun Belt selection, scored his 1,000th career point for the Chants in the final regular season game of the season, becoming the 22nd player in CCU history to reach the milestone, but more importantly, only the third to do it in just two seasons…freshman DeVante Jones came back from an injury in the second game of the season to be named the Sun Belt Freshman of the Year…he missed a total of 12 games, but came back to average in double digits in winning the award and leading all freshmen in scoring in the conference….freshman Ebrima Dibba also was injured and missed eight games, but came back to lead the Chants in assists with 106 and steals with 33…junior Tyrell Gumbs-Frater has made 65 3-pointers this season on 44 percent shooting.
CSUN Matadors (Head Coach: Mark Gottfried, Big West Conference)
First-year head coach Mark Gottfried has led the Matadors to their most overall wins and Big West Conference wins since the 2013-14 season, more than doubling their win total from the previous season…CSUN features one of the youngest teams in the country with seven freshmen, including five true freshmen who made their debuts this season…freshman Lamine Diane leads the nation in field goals made (329) and is in the Top 10 nationally in points per game (24.7) and rebounds per game (11.3)…Diane became the first Big West player in history to win Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year, and Newcomer of the Year accolades…he also earned USBWA All-District IX honors…Diane was joined on the All-Big West first-team by sophomore Terrell Gomez.
DePaul Blue Demons (Head Coach: Dave Leitao, Big East Conference)
DePaul’s 15 wins are the most since recording 20 during the 2006-07 season…the Blue Demons are led by seniors Eli Cain, Femi Olujobi, and Max Strus…the trio are the team’s top three scorers with Strus at 18.8 ppg, Cain with a scoring average of 13.2ppg, and Olujobi at 13.0 ppg…Strus was named a second-team All-Big East honoree and was tabbed the league’s player of the week three times during the season…sophomore Paul Reed was named the Big East Most Improved Player for leading the league in rebounding (8.1 rpg) and posting a scoring average of 11.1 ppg…the Blue Demons have hit a 3-pointer in 800 consecutive games…Dave Leitao is in the fourth year of his second stint as head coach at DePaul…he previous led the Blue Demons from 2002-05.
Grand Canyon Antelopes (Head Coach: Dan Majerle, Western Athletic Conference)
Grand Canyon advanced to the championship game of the WAC tournament and has won 20 games for the fourth consecutive season under head coach Dan Majerle…GCU is 18-4 this season when outrebounding its opponent and 2-8 when losing the rebounding battle…junior Carlos Johnson scored a career-high 35 points in the WAC semifinal win over Utah Valley, one night after his previous career-best mark of 31 points vs. Seattle in the quarterfinals…senior Michael Finke was named to the All-WAC first-team, while Johnson earned second-team honors…senior Gerard Martin earned All-Defensive team acclaim for the second time in his career…the Lopes are making their second consecutive CBI appearance.
Howard Bison (Head Coach: Kevin Nickelberry, Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference)
Howard’s 17 wins mark only the second time in the last 37 years that the Bison have won that many games…head coach Kevin Nickelberry leads the Bison into the postseason for the first time since 1992…sophomore R.J. Cole followed up his 2017-18 MEAC Rookie of the Year award with the 2018-19 MEAC Player of the Year honor…junior Charles Williams joins Cole on the All-MEAC first-team while junior Chad Lott earned third-team honors…Cole is the fastest Bison to reach 1,000 points in program history (44 games)…Howard leads the conference in scoring (79.2 PPG)…the Bison are the youngest team in the MEAC.
Longwood Lancers (Head Coach: Griff Aldrich, Big South Conference)
Longwood is making its first-ever Division I postseason appearance (joined D-I in 2004-05)…with 15 wins, the Lancers recorded the second-most wins in the program’s Division I era under first-year head coach Griff Aldrich…for that, Aldrich was named as a finalist for Joe B. Hall National Coach of the Year award…Longwood experienced an eight-win improvement from last season, tied for the largest turnaround under any new head coach in the country in 2018-19…the Lancers led the Big South in opponent field goal percentage (.411) and broke the school’s single-season record with 302 made 3-pointers…junior guard Shabooty Phillips, a member of Aldrich’s first recruiting class, earned an honorable mention Big South All-Conference citation and was picked as the Big South Newcomer of the Year by Three-Man-Weave.com.
Loyola Marymount Lions (Head Coach: Mike Dunlap, West Coast Conference)
LMU enters the CBI having won 20 games for the second time since 1989-90 and started the 2018-19 season with program records at 8-0 and 11-1…head coach Mike Dunlap won his 400th career NCAA game with a 76-64 win over Portland on Jan. 5…senior guard James Batemon scored the 1,000th career point of his two-year career on Feb. 23 in the win over Pacific, becoming the 35th LMU player to hit the 1,000 point milestone…for his efforts, he was named to the All-WCC first-team and the Lou Henson award watch list…the Lions rank in the top 15 in the NCAA in scoring defense at 62.8 ppg…Batemon (1st), Joe Quintana (5th), and Jeffery McClendon (6th) all rank among the top six in the WCC in steals per game…LMU won the 2018 Jamaica Classic in November with wins over Georgetown and Ohio.
South Florida Bulls (Head Coach: Brian Gregory, American Athletic Conference)
In just his second season at USF, head coach Brian Gregory has the Bulls tied for the fifth-most single-season wins in school history with 19 after inheriting a team coming off a 10-win season…he has also guided USF to the postseason for the first time since 2012…junior guard Laquincy Rideau, the AAC Defensive Player of the Year, enters the CBI with 82 steals this season and owns the USF and AAC single-season steals record…USF leads the NCAA with 887 free throws attempted…Alexis Yetna was named the AAC Freshman of the Year, giving USF its first conference Freshman of the Year since 1979.
Southern Miss Golden Eagles (Head Coach: Doc Sadler, Conference USA)
The Golden Eagles are making their 15th postseason appearance but first since the 2012 NCAA Tournament (2013 and 2014 NITs were vacated)…Southern Miss rallied from an 0-3 Conference USA start to earn the No. 3 seed and a bye in this year’s league tournament, becoming only the third team in the last decade to accomplish that feat…head coach Doc Sadler inherited a two-year postseason ban and strict scholarship reductions that will last through next season…his first six wins at the school were also taken away, so after 20 countable wins his first three years, he has taken the team to 36 in the last two seasons…senior Tyree Griffin’s 227 assists mark a single-season record…in just two years, he is No. 3 in career assists…senior Cortez Edwards is the only player to rank among the school’s top 20 in scoring, top 15 in rebounds, and top 10 in assists…he also owns the school’s career record for steals, and is three away from matching his own single-season record (71), set last year.
Stony Brook Seawolves (Interim Head Coach: Geno Ford, America East Conference)
Stony Brook enters the CBI with a school Division I record 24 regular season wins…Stony Brook finished among the top two in the America East for the second time in the last three seasons with Geno Ford on staff…the Seawolves rank among top 10 nationally in rebounding at 40.7 rpg…Stony Brook ended the regular season third in total rebounds, trailing just Duke and North Carolina…SBU finished 8-2 in games decided by five points or less…sophomore center Jeff Otchere, the America East Defensive Player of the Year, was one of the nation’s leading rim protectors, currently sitting 11th in the nation in total blocks…junior Akwasi Yeboah was named to the AEC first-team, sophomore Elijah Olyani garnered third-team honors, and freshman Miles Latimer earned All-Rookie Team laurels…SBU previous played in the 2014, 2015, and 2017 CBIs.
UAB Blazers (Head Coach: Robert Ehsan, Conference USA)
UAB advanced to the semifinals of the C-USA Tournament…Zack Bryant, a third-team All-C-USA pick, is the Blazers’ leading scorer at 14.9 ppg….the sophomore had back-to-back 20-point games in the C-USA tournament with 24 vs. UTSA in the quarterfinals and 23 vs. ODU in the semis…senior Lewis Sullivan is the team’s second leading scorer at 12.1 ppg and top rebounder at 6.8 rpg…he has scored double digits in 10 straight games and 13 of his last 14 games….at 20-14, UAB has won 20 games in back-to-back seasons and four of the last five….the Blazers top wins include Old Dominion, at Western Kentucky, at Southern Miss, and UTSA (twice)….UAB also pushed then-No. 8 Auburn to the limit before falling in overtime, 75-71.
Utah Valley Wolverines (Head Coach: Mark Pope, Western Athletic Conference)
Utah Valley won a school-record 24 games this season, surpassing the previous record of 23 set last season, marking the first time in school history that the team has recorded back-to-back 20-win seasons…UVU head coach Mark Pope has been named one of the 25 finalists for the 2019 Hugh Durham Award, presented annually to the nation’s top mid-major coach…senior Conner Toolson became just the eighth player in UVU history to score 1,000 points this season…junior Jake Toolson has been named the WAC’s Player of the Year, while Wyatt Lowell earned WAC Freshman of the Year honors, the first such honorees in UVU history…the Wolverines are playing in the CBI for the third straight season, reaching the semifinals in 2017.
West Virginia Mountaineers (Head Coach: Bob Huggins, Big 12 Conference)
West Virginia advanced to the semifinals of the Big 12 tournament with a roster that features six freshmen, one sophomore, and five juniors…freshman forward Derek Culver was named to the All-Big 12 All-Conference second-team and was a unanimous selection to the All-Freshman Team…with a win at Oklahoma State on Dec. 29, 2017, Bob Huggins moved past Jim Phelan on the NCAA Division I winningest coaches list…Huggins’ record now stands at 858-360 in his 37th season as a head coach…he needs 18 more victories to tie Adolph Rupp for seventh place all-time…Huggins is the fourth-winningest active Division I coach behind Mike Krzyzewski, Jim Boeheim, and Roy Williams…Huggins’ teams have participated in postseason play in 33 of 37 seasons…WVU has made 15 postseason appearances in the last 16 years, including the NCAA Final Four in 2010…WVU has wins over then No. 7 Kansas, No. 7 Texas Tech, and No. 25 Iowa State in 2018-19.
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About the Gazelle Group
The College Basketball Invitational is produced by the Gazelle Group of Princeton, N.J. The Gazelle Group is a sports marketing firm, specializing in event production and management, client representation, and sponsorship consulting. Gazelle produces numerous nationally-recognized events, such as the Empire Classic benefiting Wounded Warrior Project, Legends Classic presented by Old Trapper, the Sunshine Slam, and the Gotham Classic. For more information on the Gazelle Group, please visit gazellegroup.com.
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