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Clemson to Play Host to Georgia in NIT First Round Wednesday

March 7, 1999

Clemson, SC–Clemson will meet Georgia in the first round of National Invitation Tournament at Clemson’s Littlejohn Coliseum on Wednesday evening. The contest will be played at night, but the exact time will not be announced until Monday after ESPN selects its broadcast schedule. Tickets for the contest are available at $8 for adults and $4 for students high school age and under. Tickets can also be purchased by calling 1-800-CLEMSON, or in person at the Clemson ticket office at Memorial Stadium. All tickets will be general admission. Clemson will be making its first appearance in the NIT since the 1994-95 season. The Tigers were defeated in the first round that year by Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. This will be Clemson’s first NIT home game since the 1994 event when Clemson defeated Southern Mississippi in Littlejohn Coliseum, 96-85.

Overall, this will be Clemson’s 11th appearance in the NIT. Clemson has a 6-10 record in the event over the years. Twice Clemson has advanced to the quarterfinals, but the Tigers have never reached the Final Four. This will be the second meeting between Clemson and Georgia in the NIT. The Tigers won the only previous meeting, 77-65 in Athens. This will be the first meeting between Clemson and Georgia in basketball since the 1996 NCAA Tournament. Georgia won that game 81-74 in a contest played in Albuquerque, NM.

Four current Tigers who are now seniors started in that game as freshmen against the Bulldogs. Andrius Jurkunas had his career high scoring game in the contest with 19 points. Terrell McIntyre scored 10 as a starting guard for the Tigers, while Tony Christie had three and Tom Wideman added eight.

“This will be an exciting game for our team and for our fans,” said Head Coach Larry Shyatt. “Whenever Clemson and Georgia compete it has a lot of interest in this area. I know our team, especially our seniors, are looking forward to playing in a national tournament. I have been to New York for the preseason NIT and the postseason NIT and it is quite and event. It would be a terrific way for our seniors to end their careers at Clemson.

“I remember the NCAA game in 1996 very well because it was the youngest team in the tournament (Clemson) against the oldest (Georgia),” said Shyatt, who was associated Head Coach at Clemson then. “Georgia was a senior dominated team and we started four freshmen, but it was a freshman for Georgia who made some big plays. G.G. Smith made some big shots in that game to help Georgia to the victory.” Smith hit 3-6 from the field and 3-5 three-point shots for the Bulldogs, who were coached by Tubby Smith at the time. Smith ended the game with 12 points and three assists in 24 minutes. Greg Buckner led Clemson with 20 points, while Jurkunas had 19. Clemson shot 29-55 from the field and made 9-16 three-point shots, yet lost the game.

Clemson’s last win in the series took place in the 1986 NIT in Athens. Horace Grant and Glenn Corbit led the Tigers with 24 points, while Donald Hartry led Georgia with 17 in the second round contest played on St. Patrick’s Day.

First RoundWednesday, March 10 Hofstra (22-9) at Rutgers (18-12) Georgia (15-14) at Clemson (16-14) Seton Hall (15-14) at Old Dominion (24-8) Butler (20-9) at Bradley (17-11) Xavier (21-10) at Toledo (19-7) Alabama (17-14) at Wake Forest (16-13) Providence (16-13) at North Carolina State (18-13) Georgetown (15-15) at Princeton (20-7) Fresno State (21-11) at California (17-11) Northwestern (15-13) at DePaul (17-12) Pepperdine (19-12) at Colorado (17-14) Mississippi State (20-12) at Colorado State (17-10) Southern California (15-12) at Wyoming (17-9) Nevada-Las Vegas (16-12) at Nebraska (19-12) Texas Christian (19-10) at Kansas State (20-12) Georgia Tech (15-15) at Oregon (16-11)

* Times TBA