UNI seniors focus on NCAA tournament trip - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

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UNI seniors focus on NCAA tournament trip

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UNI reached the 20-win mark for the fourth straight year last season and made it to round two of the NIT. UNI reached the 20-win mark for the fourth straight year last season and made it to round two of the NIT.

Over the last decade, Northern Iowa has had the best men's basketball program in the state. The Panthers have been in the NCAA tournament five times 2004, including a Sweet 16 appearance in 2010.

UNI reached the 20-win mark for the fourth straight year last season, and made it to round two of the NIT. All but one player returns from last year's team that finished third in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Head coach Ben Jacobson has won over 67 percent of his games over the last five seasons, but has missed the NCAA tourney the last two years.

"I give our guys a lot of credit for putting themselves in a position where we're relevant on a national basis when it comes to our basketball program," said Jacobson. "I'm certain, for our four seniors, that's part of our motivation."

"When you put on the Panther uniform you expect success and you want to go out there and win every single game," said senior Jake Koch. "So twenty wins was great and all and playing in the NIT was fun but we want to go to the big dance and we want to play in the NCAA tournament. We want to play the big teams and this year we have a great opportunity to do that."

UNI will play an exhibition game against Briar Cliff on October 27th. One of the big pre-conference games is against Iowa on December 15th in the Big 4 Classic in Des Moines.

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