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Kennesaw State players punch their ticket to the NCAA Tournament, slated to play Xavier on Friday


The Kennesaw State men’s basketball team is going to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history.

Kennesaw State’s men’s basketball team will be heading about 5½ hours to Greensboro, North Carolina, to face third-seeded Xavier as it makes its NCAA Tournament debut. The 14th-seeded Owls Kennesaw State’s men’s basketball team will not have to go very far to make its NCAA Tournament debut. They will play in the first-round game on Friday. A time and network have yet to be set.

The Kennesaw State men’s basketball team punched their ticket to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history after beating Liberty 67-66 in front of a school-record announced attendance of 3,805 at KSU Convocation Center.

KSU found themselves going from a 1-win team three years ago to ASUN Champions in 2023 and now to the NCAA Tournament. As a result of their win of the ASUN tournament, the Owls received the league’s automatic bid, the school’s first-ever as a Division I program. The victory for the Owls was secured when Terrell Burden, a senior who went to Campbell High, was fouled driving to the basket by Liberty’s Isiah Warfield.

During the March 12 NCAA selection show, the Owls will learn where they will go and who they will play.  

Information about a viewing party for KSU, as well as tickets for the NCAA Tournament, will be announced soon.

Said KSU President Dr. Kathy Schwaig Kathy, “I’ve been here about 21 years, and what I’ve seen in the Convocation Center in the last month and a half I’ve never seen. So when we get our students, when we get the community, we get this wonderful momentum. And now all the energy is focused. It’s just electric.”

The team, under the direction of Coach Amir Abdur-Rahim, has now at least doubled their win total in three consecutive seasons, going from one win in 2019-20 to five in 2020-21, to 13 in 2021-22

Said Abdur-Rahim on the win and trip to the big dance, “People don’t understand, like even our guys right now, they don’t understand how special this is. They won’t realize it until 5-10 years from now when they come back.”

Coach Amir Abdur-Rahim is also now nominated for several national Coach of the Year awards.

The NCAA tournament starts Tuesday, March 14.



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