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The Ohio State men’s basketball team took part in a pre-tournament press conference at the 2007 Dick’s Sporting Goods NIT Season Tip-Off Tuesday in New York.

The Buckeyes take on Syracuse at 9 p.m. Wednesday at Madison Square Garden. The game will be televised on ESPN2.

Thad Matta, head coach of the Buckeyes, spoke to local media and NIT officials along with the other head coaches of the participating teams.

Ohio State then practiced at the New York Athletic Club near Central Park before heading to a tournament welcome dinner at Tavern on the Green.

Ohio State is making its first appearance in the NIT preseason semifinals after two wins in Columbus to open the season against Green Bay and Columbia Nov. 12-13.

The consolation game if the 2007 event will be held at 4:30 p.m. Friday (ESPN). The finals will be televised by ESPN2 at 7 p.m. Washington and Texas A&M round out the 2007 field.