UTEP is one of eight teams participating in the 2017 Tire Pros Puerto Rico Tip-Off. The Miners will join Boise State, Florida State, Illinois State, Iowa State, South Carolina, Tulsa and Western Michigan in the event Nov. 16-19 at the Coliseo Roberto Clemente in San Juan.
The tournament field was announced on Thursday by ESPN Events.
Iowa State and Tulsa participated in the 2016 NCAA Tournament, while Florida State and South Carolina earned bids to the NIT.
UTEP will be making its first appearance in the tournament, but Miner head coach Tim Floyd is no stranger to the event. His USC Trojans were invited to the 2008 Puerto Rico Tip-Off.
“It’s a great place. It’s a great cultural experience for the players,” Floyd said. “We have always found the hospitality to be fantastic. The events that ESPN runs are so helpful for our team in terms of playing against high-caliber competition in a situation where we have to prepare back-to-back nights. It’s something that we’ve always been able to benefit from. The field is outstanding and we look forward to being a part of it.”
Boise State (20-12), Florida State (20-14), Iowa State (23-12), South Carolina (25-9) and Tulsa (20-12) all posted 20+ victories during the 2015-16 season. Iowa State reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament.
The Puerto Rico Tip-Off has been in existence since 2007. Past champions include Miami (2007), Xavier (2008), Villanova (2009), Minnesota (2010), Alabama (2011), Oklahoma State (2012), Charlotte (2013), West Virginia (2014) and Miami (2015).
This year’s field includes Arizona State, Clemson, Davidson, Missouri, Northern Iowa, Oklahoma, Tulane and Xavier.