DAYTON, Ohio (AP) -Neither Alabama State nor Morehead State has been to the NCAA tournament recently. But Alabama State's five-year absence pales to that of Morehead State, which hasn't played in the tourney for a quarter century.
``It makes it very special,'' Morehead State coach Donnie Tyndall said Monday.
The two teams meet Tuesday in the opening round of the tournament in Dayton for the right to take on top-seeded Louisville on Friday.
T only to lose to Louisville in the second round.
``When I took over three years ago, I feel the community had kind of lost touch with the basketball program.'' said Tyndall.
The team has since actively sought to get the students more involved, meeting and greeting them at the student union on game days.
``I have a great deal of passion and pride about Morehead State,'' said Tyndall. ``I feel that everyone in town and at the university feels that they are part of this.''
for the tournament by winning the Ohio Valley Conference tourney, defeating Austin Peay 67-65 in double overtime on Steve Peterson's jump shot with 1.4 seconds left. Leon Buchanan is a power for the Eagles, averaging 15.1 points a game.
Alabama State (22-9), from Montgomery, made the tournament in 2004, losing in the first round to Duke.
The Southwestern Athletic Conference champions are led by Brandon Brooks, who averages 13.8 points and 6.8 assists. Andrew Hayles, who made three 3-pointers during a pivotal stretch of the SWAC title game to beat Jackson State.
The Hornets have also won 13 of their last 14 games.
``The strength of their team is probably the fact that they are so experienced,'' Tyndall said. ``Their team is well put together. Their coach does a very good job. The right guy takes the right shots.''

NCAAB Headlines

NCAAB Top Stories

Thumbnail Bridges staying, MSU now favored With the announcement of Miles Bridgesreturning to Michigan Statenext season, the Spartans have now emerged as the favorite to win the NCAA Tournament...
Thumbnail 2018 NCAA Championship Odds The NCAA Tournamentfor 2017 concluded last night, so now it’s time to take a closer look at what the 2018 Tournament may produce.
Thumbnail Gonzaga vs. UNC Prediction Will Gonzaga pull off the small upset tonight when it takes on North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament Championship Game at 9:20PM ET?
Thumbnail Tournament MOP Odds With the NCAA Tournamentdown to its final game, here is a look at which North Carolinaand Gonzagaplayers are among the favorites to win Most Outstanding...
Thumbnail NCAA Title Game Over/Under Prediction Will tonight's Gonzaga and North Carolina NCAA championship game at 9:20PM ET be high-scoring for bettors?

NCAAB Team Pages