NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 10: Kris Joseph #32 of the Syracuse Orange drives to the basket against Justin Burrell #24 of the St. John's Red Storm during the quarterfinals of the 2011 Big East Men's Basketball Tournament presented by American Eagle Outfitters at Madison Square Garden on March 10, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
On, Jon Rothstein of CBS and MSG tweeted that Oklahoma State and Stanford would join Syracuse and Virginia Tech as the four host schools, and No. 1 seeds, for the 2011 NIT Season Tip-Off, which concludes Thanksgiving week in New York City. Three of those four also featured in the eight-team field at the 76 Classic in Anaheim last year. (You get one guess as to who the outlier is.)
According to SB Nation's Syracuse blog, Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician, the bracket is set up so the Orange and Cardinal will meet, if they both win their campus round games (since the NCAA-run NIT hasn't gone to the lengths of the Gazelle Group events in terms of guaranteeing the host schools a place in the semifinals).
The Cardinal finished in 7th place in the 76 Classic in Anaheim last season, needing overtime to defeat DePaul to avoid the wooden spoon. Stanford didn't meet the Hokies or Cowboys in that event, but those two schools played a rather forgettable 56-51 semifinal on Black Friday afternoon. Virginia Tech finished second behind UNLV, while Oklahoma State topped Murray State to claim third.
The pair will renew acquaintances in the semifinals in New York, again provided they make it that far.
I've updated the 2011 Early Season Event pagee with the info from this post.