The first ticket to the 2021 NCAA Tournament was punched Friday -- by default.
Liberty (22-5) is headed to the NCAAs because its foe in the Atlantic Sun Conference tournament final on Saturday, North Alabama, is ineligible to advance.
North Alabama is making the transition to Division I sports, and it won't be eligible to compete in the NCAA Tournament until its four-year waiting period ends following the 2021-22 season.
The Atlantic Sun final still will be contested, but nothing officially will be at stake.
Liberty earned a 77-64 win over Stetson (11-14) in one Atlantic Sun semifinal game Friday in Jacksonville. In the other semifinal, North Alabama (13-10) defeated Florida Gulf Coast (10-8).
The Flames tweeted out a photo of a glass slipper along with the caption "GOING DANCING."
Liberty previously made the NCAA Tournament field in 1994, 2004, 2013 and 2019.
--Field Level Media