Concordia University Wisconsin Athletics


Concordia Invitational Tournament history

History of the Concordia Invitational Tournament

The Concordia Invitational Tournament is the creation of Coach Eldon "Pete" Pederson of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. In the fall of 1950, Pederson developed the idea of a basketball tournament involving The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod's four culminating schools: the teachers' colleges in Seward, Neb., and River Forest, Ill., and the seminaries in Springfield, Ill., and St. Louis, Mo.

The inaugural tournament was held in St. Louis March 9-10, 1951. Besides Pederson, Don Dinkmeyer of River Forest, Luther Schwich of Seward, and Ronald Wagner of Springfield were the coaches in this new tournament's trial run. St. Louis defeated River Forest, 50-40, to win the championship. The response to the tournament was so overwhelming that it became an annual event. The site of the tournament rotated so that each institution would have the opportunity to serve as the host.

New teams, women take to the hardcourt

Concordia Seminary, Springfield, dropped its intercollegiate athletics program in 1963. Westmar College in Le Mars, Iowa, and Concordia Senior College, Fort Wayne, Ind., participated until 1967 when Concordia St. Paul, having just become a four-year college, entered the tournament as the fourth participant.

The women's basketball tournament was introduced in 1965 in River Forest with a single game between the Seward "Lady Bulldogs" and the River Forest "Kittens." In 1971, St. Paul was invited to participate in a three-team round-robin tournament. The tournament went to a four-team format in 1973, with the host school responsible for inviting the fourth team. St. Louis School of Nursing, Concordia Milwaukee, Augsburg College, Maryville College, Dana College, North Park College, St. John's Winfield, Concordia Portland and Concordia Mequon have all participated as the fourth team.

A new beginning and a gracious farewell marked 1994. After 42 years of participation, and winning 16 championships (the last coming in 1973), Concordia Seminary, St. Louis withdrew from the tournament. The Concordia Mequon men's team began its first year of competition in the tournament after being invited to fill the slot vacated by St. Louis. The Concordia Mequon women's team had been the fourth invited team since 1990.

One final change came about as St. Paul switched their affiliation to NCAA Division II and thus competed in their final tournament in 2001. Concordia Ann Arbor was invited to fill their position and began play in 2002. Coinciding with this change, the site rotation was changed so that Ann Arbor did not have the burden of hosting in their initial appearance, and Mequon assumed the host's role for 2002 with Ann Arbor following in 2003.

CIT traveling trophies

Aid Association for Lutherans donated the tournament's traveling trophy in 1957. Designed by Dr. Adalbert Kretzmann, the trophy stands not only as a symbol of tournament victory, but is also inscribed with the true meaning of athletics among the Concordias: "Inaugurated to sponsor the highest ideals in competitive athletics, in fullest conformity with the Spirit of Christ and its demand in the lives of Christian men."

In 1981, Aid Association for Lutherans donated a traveling trophy for the women. The champions of the tournament are in custody of the trophy until the subsequent tournament.

All-tournament teams

All-tournament teams for men have been selected since 1959. The All-Tournament Team includes two members from the championship team, in addition to one member from each of the other participating teams. In 1962, the River Forest Cougar Club donated a most valuable player trophy, and it soon became a permanent part of the tournament awards presentation. In 1977, the women adopted the same tournament format and awards presentation.

January madness

The Concordia Invitational Tournament was originally scheduled as a post-season tournament but, due to conflicts with conference, district and national tournaments, it was cancelled in 1976 and moved to the end of January in 1977. In 1990, the tournament was moved to early December as an experiment. The December date was immediately unpopular with the fans, coaches and administrators, so it was quickly shifted back to the last week of January, where it has remained since that time.

Seedless scheduling

For the first 15 years of the tournament, the teams were matched, or seeded, at the discretion of the host institution. In the mid-1960s, the seeding was based on the win-loss record of the participating schools, with the top team playing the team with the poorest record. This format prevailed until 1990 when, at the 40th tournament, it was decided to match the teams that did not play each other the previous year. This format has been followed to the present day.

CIT spirit

Cheerleaders, dance teams, pep bands and mascots have always been part of the festivities. The CIT spirit is demonstrated yearly in the fan antics, dance routines, good-humored mascot follies and pep band competitions. The excitement, spirited games and fellowship lives on and continues to grow with each Concordia Invitational Tournament. Truly, it has become one of the highlights of the athletic year.

Men's Basketball      All-Time Records       Title Won
Nebraska 76-48 24
St. Louis 47-37 16
Chicago 60-64 14
Wisconsin 22-18 3
St. Paul 24-44 2
Ann Arbor 11-13 1
Springfield 7-19 1
Westmar 1-1 0
Fort Wayne 0-4 0

Men's Basketball Year-by-Year Results

Year     Champion     Coach     MVP
1951     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1952     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1953     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1954     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1955     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1956     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1957     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1958     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1959     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson      
1960     Chicago     Don Spitz      
1961     St. Louis     Edlon Pederson      
1962     Springfield     Warren Wilbert     M. Schumacher (Chicago)
1963     Chicago     Don Spitz     A. Hermann (Chicago)
1964     Nebraska     Reuben Stohs     G. Bredow (Nebraska)
1965     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson     T. Zollman (St. Louis)
1966     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson     T. Henning (Nebraska)
1967     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     T. Ruppert (Chicago)
1968     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson     J. Roos (St. Louis)
1969     St. Paul      Robert Barnes      R. Wingert (St. Paul) 
1970     St. Louis      Edlon Pederson      R. Rall (St. Louis) 
1971     St. Loius     Eldon Pederson     D. Marth (St. Louis)
1972     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson     R. Stelzer (St. Louis)
1973     St. Louis     Eldon Pederson     L. Theis (St. Louis)
1974     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     W. Heese (Chicago)
1975     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     W. Heese (Chicago)
1976     No CIT            
1977     Nebraska     Reuben Stohs     S. White (Nebraska)
1978     St. Paul     John Hendrickson     D. Felton (St. Paul)
1979     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     J. Ledebuhr (Chicago)
1980     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     M. Graf (Chicago)
1981     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     J. Ledebuhr (Chicago)
1982     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     J. Shiley (Chicago)
1983     Nebraska     Kent Einspahr     G. Schmidt (Nebraska)
1984     Nebraska     Kent Einspahr     M. Cutler (Nebraska)
1985     Chicago     Tom Faszholz     D. Stellwagen (Chicago)
1986     Nebraska     Brian Mueller     R. Freeman (Nebraska)
1987     Nebraska     Brian Mueller     B. Cunningham (Nebraska)
1988     Nebraska     Tom Baack     J. Sickels (Nebraska)
1989     Nebraska     Tom Baack     B. Cumber (Nebraska)
1990     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     M. List (Nebraska)
1991*     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt      J. Puelz (Nebraska) 
1992     Nebraska      Grant Schmidt      M. Works (Nebraska) 
1993     Chicago      Keith Peterson     K. Handy (Chicago) 
1994     Nebraska      Grant Schmidt      M. Hoffart (Nebraska) 
1995     Nebraska      Grant Schmidt     R. Kness (Nebraska) 
1996     Nebraska      Grant Schmidt      J. Toth (Wisconsin)
1997     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     M. Taylor (St. Paul)
1998     Chicago     Gary Gutenkunst     P. Lark (Chicago)
1999     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     J. Dahlke (Nebraska)
2000     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     T. Schroeder (Nebraska)
2001     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     D. Engelbart (Nebraska)
2002     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     T. Wischmeier (Nebraska)
2003     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     J. Calver (Nebraska)
2004     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     R. Wietor (Wisconsin)
2005     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     M. Wernke (Nebraska)
2006     Ann Arbor     Ben Limback     N. Ashcraft (Ann Arbor)
2007     Ann Arbor     Ben Limback     T. Weisshaar (Ann Arbor)
2008     Wisconsin     Shawn Cassidy     T. Moulton (Wisconsin)
2009     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     D. Veselinovic (Nebraska)
2010     Wisconsin     Shawn Cassidy     M. Schneider (Wisconsin)
2011     Chicago     Tyler Jones     D. Young (Chicago)
2012     Nebraska     Grant Schmidt     B. Smith (Nebraska)
2013     Wisconsin     Shawn Cassidy    

Brian Jackson (Wisconsin)

* Game played in December of 1990


Women's Basketball      All-Time Records      Titles Won
Nebraska 62-18 23
St. Paul 34-22 8
Chicago 25-55 4
Wisconsin 25-27 3
Ann Arbor 11-13 2
Portland 1-1 0
Dana 1-1 0
Augsburg 0-2 0
Maryville 0-2 0
North Park 0-2 0
Luthern Nurses 0-6 0
Winfield 0-10 0


Women's Basketball Year-by-Year Results

Year     Champion     Coach     MVP
1973     St. Paul     Carol Roose      
1974     Chicago     Marjorie Albohn      
1975     Chicago     Ruth Buhrke      
1976     No CIT            
1977     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     C. Pummill (St. Paul)
1978     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     P. Jackson (St. Paul)
1979     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     C. Baumann (St. Paul)
1980     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     J. Boynes (St. Paul)
1981     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     R. Hintz (St. Paul)
1982     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     R. Hintz (St. Paul)
1983     Nebraska     Carl Everts     J. Weber (Nebraska
1984     Chicago     Al Hermann     J. Shimek (Chicago)
1985     St. Paul     J. & K. Surridge     J. Bammert (St. Paul)
1986     Chicago     Al Hermann     T. Dunker (Chicago)
1987     Nebraska     Carl Everts     J. Dartmann (Nebraska)
1988     Nebraska     Carl Everts     S. Poppe (Nebraska)
1989     Nebraska     Carl Everts     T. Noffke (Nebraska)
1990     Nebraska     Carl Everts     L. Beck (Nebraska)
1991*     Nebraska     Carl Everts     L. Beck (Nebraska)
1992     Nebraska     Carl Everts     T. Kingle (Nebraska)
1993     Wisconsin     Jack Surridge     H. Norby (Wisconsin)
1994     Nebraska     Mark Lemke     T. Kindle-Pinneo (Nebraska)
1995     Wisconsin     Jack Surridge     L. Medne (Wisconsin)
1996     Nebraska     Mark Lemke     A. Nyland (Nebraska
1997     Nebraska     Mark Lemke     S. Miller (Nebraska)
1998     Nebraska     Mark Lemke     S. Miller (Nebraska)
1999     Nebraska      Micah Parker      M. Samek (Nebraska) 
2000     Nebraska      Micah Parker      M. Deitemeyer (Wisconsin) 
2001     Nebraska      Micah Parker      H. Kobza (Nebraska) 
2002     Nebraska      Micah Parker      S. Harrison (Nebraska) 
2003     Nebraska      Tood Voss     E. Rhoden (Nebraska) 
2004     Nebraska      Todd Voss     S. Harrison (Nebraska) 
2005     Nebraska      Todd Voss      S. Harrison (Nebraska) 
2006     Nebraska      Todd Voss      W. Stichka (Nebraska) 
2007     Wisconsin      Stacey Brunner      K. Rouppe (Wisconsin) 
2008     Nebraska      Drew Olson      W. Stichka (Nebraska) 
2009     Nebraska      Drew Olson      W. Stichka (Nebraska) 
2010     Nebraska      Drew Olson      A. Kuca (Nebraska)
2011     Ann Arbor     Andrea Gorski     K. Elsworth (Ann Arbor)
2012     Nebraska     Drew Olson     A. Kistler (Nebraska)
2013     Ann Arbor     Andrea Gorski     H. Sabol (Ann Arbor