I'm heading over to Madison Square Garden shortly for the NIT Season Tip-Off championship game, between No. 7 Villanova and No. 24 Tennessee. Should be an entertaining game, between two teams who like to run -- tip-off should be right around 5 p.m., airing on ESPN and ESPN3.com.
Here are three things to look out for in the final:
HOMERS: This game will be littered with players from the New York metropolitan area. Villanova's star guard, Corey Fisher, is from the Bronx; two other starters, guard Corey Stokes (Bayonne) and forward Antonio Pena (Brooklyn) have local roots as well. On the Tennessee side, star freshman Tobias Harris is from Long Island, and center Brian Williams is from the Bronx as well.
CLAMP DOWN? Fisher poured in 26 points in the semifinals against UCLA, and is averaging 18.4 points per game on the year. But Tennessee plays a swarming defense -- they shut down Virginia Commonwealth's leading scorer in the semis, and they and will surely be keyed on Fisher. We'll see whether he is limited, or whether he has another huge game in front of the home crowd.
EARLY RETURNS: Harris got off quickly in the semis against VCU, making his first five shots for a quick 10 points. But he was 0-for-9 from the field the rest of the game. Harris is just a freshman, but he is Tennessee's best offensive player -- the Volunteers will need a big game out of him to pull the upset.