The NCAA mistakenly told South Carolina they got an at-large bid

(AP Photo/Sam Craft)
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Buried in a story on NOLA.com this morning was a juicy little nugget that claimed that the South Carolina men’s basketball team was, essentially, invited and then disinvited from the NCAA tournament on Selection Sunday.

Turns out, the story was true. The NCAA confirmed it this afternoon, saying that a staffer mistakenly sent a congratulatory text to South Carolina that was not meant to be sent to them.

Ouch.

I feel bad for whoever it was that had to tell Frank Martin that their invitation to the tournament was a mistake.

Here’s the full statement from Dan Gavitt, the NCAA’s vice president of men’s basketball championships:

“Unfortunately, during the selection show a junior men’s basketball staff member mistakenly sent a text to a member of the University of South Carolina athletics department staff via an app we used for the first time during the 2016 tournament. The text was supposed to go to all teams, congratulating them for making the tournament. Regrettably, a text meant for another institution went to South Carolina instead.”

“While the Gamecocks were given serious consideration, at no time during the selection process was South Carolina voted in to the field. Ultimately, they were one of the last four teams left out of the tournament. I take full responsibility for this clerical error and apologize to Coach Martin, his staff and team, and the entire University of South Carolina community.”