NIT First Round Today at 12 Noon: Jalen Crutcher talks about playing against his hometown team, Memphis as Dayton Flyers take on the Tigers

Jalen Crutcher driving to the basket (courtesy Dayton Media Relations)
Jalen Crutcher UD guard Memphis kid playing this week in NIT vs. Memphis Tigers 3 17 21.mp3


Flyers Have Qualified For The Post Season The Last Three Years, and Six Of The Last Seven

DAYTON – The University of Dayton Flyers will play the University of Memphis in the first round of the NIT on Saturday, March 20 at 12 noon ET in UNT Coliseum on the campus of the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas.

Dayton is 14-9 this season, reaching the quarterfinals of the Atlantic 10 championship.  

Dayton has qualified for the post-season in the last three seasons since Anthony Grant took over as coach at his alma mater.  The Flyers reached the NIT in 2019, were granted the A-10’s automatic qualifier to the NCAA tournament when the A-10 championship was cancelled last year, and the NIT in 2021.  UD has also reached post-season play six of the last seven years.

The game will carried by WHIO Radio, televised on ESPN and streamed on the ESPN App. Streaming audio, video and stats will be available at

• This will be Dayton’s 26th NIT appearance, second only to St. John’s 30 NIT berths.  The Flyers’ NIT lineage harkens back to the tournament’s heyday in the 1950’s.  UD was the NIT runner-up five times in the 1950’s and won the championship in 1962, 1968 and 2010.
• Four University of Dayton men’s basketball players earned Atlantic 10 post-season honors in three categories this season.  Jalen Crutcher was named First Team All-Atlantic 10 for the second time, Ibi Watson was named Third Team All-Atlantic 10, Jordy Tshimanga was named Academic All-Atlantic 10, and Mustapha Amzil named to the A-10 All-Rookie Team.
• This is Crutcher’s fourth A-10 honor in four seasons.  He was on the All-Rookie Team in 2017-18, Third Team All-Atlantic 10 in 2018-19 and also on the first team in 2019-20.  
• Crutcher was fourth in scoring (18.1 points per game), sixth in assists (4.8 per game) and second in minutes (38.1 per game) in in the A-10 in 2020-21.  He joins Obi Toppin as the only UD’s men’s basketball players to be two-time first-team All-Atlantic 10 selections.
• Watson was named Third Team All-Atlantic 10 after finishing 10th in A-10 in scoring (15.8), fourth in minutes (37.1) and third in both 3-pt. FG% (.427, 61-143) and three-pointers per game (2.7).  He was the only A-10 player listed in the top five in both three-point categories, and had the most three-pointers made of anyone in the top 10 in percentage.  
• Tshimanga is a graduate student with a 3.83 GPA in School Counseling.  He earned his undergraduate degree in August.  This season, he was fourth in the A-10 in rebounding (8.0).  He was eight field goals made short of qualifying for A-10 rankings, and his .592 FG% (58-98) would have led the league.  He started all 22 games he played in, averaging 6.8 points a game.
• Amzil is an interesting story.  He signed with the Flyers in the fall of 2020 to be part of UD’s nationally-ranked recruiting Class of 2021.  Instead, exactly 50 days after he signed, he earned the first of his three Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Week awards.  In 18 games (14 starts), he was third on the team in scoring (9.8 points a game), rebounds (5.5) and FG% (.496, 63-127).   
• The Flyers are 9-5 against teams with winning records, and 5-5 vs. foes with losing records.

• Saturday’s winner will play either Boise State or SMU on Thursday, March 25.



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