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Georgia-Iowa Is Highlight of That Other First Round

March 11, 1998|Associated Press

Georgia at Iowa is the kind of games fans want to see--high-scoring offenses, teams from major conferences with NCAA tournament experience.

But tonight's game is a first-round NIT contest, not NCAA, making motivation difficult for coaches Tom Davis of Iowa and Ron Jirsa of Georgia.

"I'm worried about it," said Davis, whose Hawkeyes (20-10) were denied an NCAA bid because of a soft nonconference schedule.

Jirsa, in his first year at Georgia (16-14), gave his team a simple message.

"It is important to understand that the NIT is an opportunity to play more basketball," said Jirsa, who ad a disappointing season after inheriting all five starters from a team that was 24-9 and went to the NCAA tournament last season.

Fifteen of the NIT's 16 first-round games will be played tonight.

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