Stivrins was a unanimous choice for the All-Big Ten First Team. The 2018 AVCA First-Team All-American collected her second career all-conference honor after 2.57 kills per set, 1.06 blocks per set and a team-best .383 hitting percentage during the regular season. Stivrins' .412 hitting percentage in conference play was third-best in the Big Ten, and the junior middle blocker guided a Husker defense that had a league-best .156 opponent hitting percentage in Big Ten play.
Sun earned her first career All-Big Ten honor, but her second career all-conference honor as she was an All-Big 12 first teamer at Texas in 2017. The junior outside hitter led the Huskers with 3.57 kills per set with 2.42 digs per set and a team-high 24 aces during the regular season. Sun posted double-digit kills in 18 of 20 Big Ten matches, and her 3.53 kills per set in Big Ten play ranked eighth.
Hames collected her first All-Big Ten award after averaging 10.92 assists and 2.90 digs per set during the regular season. One of the best defensive setters in the nation, Hames recorded a team-high 15 double-doubles and also served 21 aces. Her 11.37 assists per set in Big Ten play ranked third in the conference.
Kubik earned Nebraska's first Big Ten Freshman of the Year honor and first conference freshman of the year since Hannah Werth won the award in 2009 in the Big 12. Kubik averaged 2.73 kills and 2.52 digs per set in her first year as a Husker. She ranked fourth among Big Ten freshmen in kills (2.73 per set) and digs (2.52 per set) in conference play. The outside hitter was also named to the All-Big Ten Second Team and the All-Freshman Team. Kubik is the first Husker freshman to be named to an All-Big Ten team since Kadie Rolfzen in 2013.
Knuckles earned All-Freshman Team accolades after leading the Huskers with 3.71 digs per set in her first year as the Huskers' libero. Knuckles served 20 aces and was a Big Ten Freshman of the Week and Big Ten Co-Defensive Player of the Week during the season, helping the Huskers lead all Big Ten teams with a .156 opponent hitting percentage in conference play.
Sophomore opposite hitter Anezka Szabo received Nebraska's Sportsmanship Award.
Wisconsin's Dana Rettke was the Big Ten Player of the Year. Wisconsin coach Kelly Sheffield was chosen Coach of the Year by the media, while Penn State's Russ Rose was voted Coach of the Year by his fellow coaches.
2019 Big Ten Volleyball All-Big Ten Honorees
Jacqueline Quade, Sr., Illinois
Katie Myers, So., Maryland
Paige Jones, So., Michigan*
Mackenzi Welsh, Sr., Michigan
CC McGraw, So., Minnesota
Regan Pittman, Jr., Minnesota*
Stephanie Samedy, Jr., Minnesota
Nicklin Hames, So., Nebraska
Lauren Stivrins, Jr., Nebraska*
Lexi Sun, Jr., Nebraska
Kaitlyn Hord, So., Penn State*
Jonni Parker, So., Penn State*
Kendall White, Sr., Penn State*
Grace Cleveland, So., Purdue*
Blake Mohler, Sr., Purdue
Sydney Hilley, Jr., Wisconsin*
Grace Loberg, Jr., Wisconsin
Dana Rettke, Jr., Wisconsin*
* denotes unanimous selection
Ashlyn Fleming, Sr., Illinois
Breana Edwards, So., Indiana
Cori Crocker, Sr., Michigan
Alexis Hart, Sr., Minnesota
Taylor Morgan, Sr., Minnesota
Madi Kubik, Fr., Nebraska
Temi Thomas-Ailara, Fr., Northwestern
Kylie Murr, Fr., Ohio State
Gabby Blossom, So., Penn State
Caitlyn Newton, Jr., Purdue
Madison Duello, Sr., Wisconsin
Molly Haggerty, Jr., Wisconsin
Danielle Hart, So., Wisconsin
Diana Brown, Illinois
May Pertofsky, Michigan
Jessica Robinson, Michigan
Kenzie Knuckles, Nebraska
Madi Kubik, Nebraska
Temi Thomas-Ailara, Northwestern
Jenaisya Moore, Ohio State
Kylie Murr, Ohio State
Player of the Year: Dana Rettke, Jr., Wisconsin
Defensive Player of the Year: Kendall White, Sr., Penn State
Setter of the Year: Sydney Hilley, Jr., Wisconsin
Freshman of the Year: Madi Kubik, Nebraska
Coach of the Year (Coaches): Russ Rose, Penn State
Coach of the Year (Media): Kelly Sheffield, Wisconsin
Beth Prince, Sr., OH, Illinois
Meaghan Koors, Sr., DS, Indiana
Brie Orr, Jr., S, Iowa
Taylor Smith, Sr., S, Maryland
Sydney Wetterstrom, Sr., OH, Michigan
Sam McLean, Sr., DS/L, Michigan State
Lauren Litzau, Sr., DS/L, Minnesota
Anezka Szabo, So., OH, Nebraska
Emily Ehman, Sr., L, Northwestern
Bia Rodrigues-Franklin, Sr., OH, Ohio State
Emily Sciorra, Sr., DS, Penn State
Jael Johnson, So., MB, Purdue
Jasmine Stackhouse, Sr., MB, Rutgers
M.E. Dodge, Sr., DS/L, Wisconsin
Nebraska senior cornerback Lamar Jackson was one of seven Husker defensive players to be honored by the Big Ten Conference on Tuesday, as the league office announced its all-conference defensive teams.
Jackson earned second-team All-Big Ten honors from both the Big Ten Coaches and Big Ten Media. The 6-3, 215-pound Jackson ranked among the Big Ten and national leaders with 12 pass breakups and tied for the team lead with three interceptions. Jackson also tallied 40 tackles, four tackles for loss and a sack, while forcing two fumbles and recovering another.
Defensive lineman Khalil Davis earned third-team all-conference honors from the league coaches after his standout senior season. The 6-2, 315-pound Davis led Nebraska with 12 tackles for loss and eight sacks. His sack total was the highest by a Husker player since 2015, while his TFL total was the best by a Blackshirt since the 2014 campaign. Davis was also recognized as an honorable-mention All-Big Ten pick by the media panel.
Four other Huskers earned honorable-mention recognition on Tuesday. Nose tackle Darrion Daniels was recognized by the league coaches. Daniels anchored the defensive line and tallied 34 tackles and four tackles for loss. Linebacker Mohamed Barry was an honorable-mention choice by the league’s media panel. He led Nebraska with 89 tackles, including four tackles for loss. This marked the second straight year Barry received conference honors, after being a third-team pick in 2018.
A pair of versatile defensive backs also earned honorable-mention accolades from the Big Ten Media. Junior Dicaprio Bootle started the first eight games at cornerback before moving to safety and finished the season with 31 tackles and six breakups. It marked the second straight year Bootle has received league honors after being a third-team choice in 2018.
Sophomore Cam Taylor-Britt also divided time between cornerback and safety in 2019. Taylor-Britt finished the year with 49 tackles, including four tackles for loss. He tied for the team lead with three interceptions and one fumble recovered. He also forced four fumbles, tying the most by a Husker since 1999.
Junior defensive end Ben Stille was also recognized on Tuesday as a Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honoree. Earlier this season, Stille was named an Academic All-District VII selection.
The Big Ten Conference will announce offensive honorees and award winners on Wednesday.
All-Big Ten Defensive Honorees
Lamar Jackson, Sr., CB—Second Team (Media and Coaches)
Khalil Davis, Sr., DL—Third Team (Coaches), Honorable Mention (Media)
Darrion Daniels, Sr. NT—Honorable Mention (Coaches)
Dicaprio Bootle, Jr., DB—Honorable Mention (Media)
Mohamed Barry, Sr., LB—Honorable Mention (Media)
Cam Taylor-Britt, Soph., DB—Honorable Mention (Media)
Ben Stille-Big Ten Sportsmanship Award Honoree
Live television coverage will be provided by the Big Ten Network with Larry Punteney and Brenda VanLengen on the call.
Live radio coverage for Wednesday's game with Duke can be heard on B107.3 FM in Lincoln and CD 105.9 FM in Omaha beginning at 5:45 p.m. (CT). Stations across the state will also carry the broadcast on the Learfield-IMG College Husker Sports Network. Free live audio can be found at Huskers.com and the Huskers App.
Nebraska is coming off a pair of double-digit wins over USC and Sacred Heart at the South Point Shootout in Las Vegas over the Thanksgiving weekend.
Senior guard Hannah Whitish earned a spot on the all-tournament team following her season-high 15 points in Saturday's win over Sacred Heart. Whitish, a two-time All-Big Ten guard, needs just three assists to become the first Husker in history to reach combined career milestones of 1,000 points (1,032), 400 assists (397) and 200 three-point field goals made (211).
Nebraska continued to show strong defense in the wins in Las Vegas. In fact, during a 25-minute stretch covering the entire fourth quarter against USC, the entire first quarter against Sacred Heart, and the first five minutes of the second quarter against the Pioneers, the Huskers surrendered just one field goal.
Over eight games to open the season, Nebraska has held six opponents to 55 points or less. Last season, the Huskers held just two opponents to 55 or less the entire season (30 games).
Offensively, a trio of sophomores (Leigha Brown, Sam Haiby, Ashtyn Veerbeek) continue to lead the Huskers.
Brown leads Nebraska in scoring (14.3 ppg) producing double figures in each of NU's first seven games this season. Haiby (10.4 ppg) owns the Huskers' biggest scoring effort of the season (28 at Missouri) and Veerbeek ranks third on the team in scoring (9.0 ppg) while leading the Big Red in rebounding (6.5 rpg).
Nebraska Cornhuskers (7-1) vs. Duke Blue Devils (6-2)
Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019, 6 p.m. (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (15,000) - Lincoln, Neb.
Live TV: BTN (Larry Punteney, Brenda VanLengen)
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (5:45 p.m.)
Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)
Lincoln - B107.3 FM; Omaha-CD105.9 FM; Huskers.com, Huskers App
Nebraska Cornhuskers (7-1, 0-0 Big Ten)
13 - Ashtyn Veerbeek - 6-2 - So. - F - 9.0 ppg, 6.5 rpg
31 - Kate Cain - 6-5 - Jr. - C - 8.9 ppg, 5.9 rpg
3 - Hannah Whitish - 5-9 - Sr. - G - 7.3 ppg, 4.1 rpg
4 - Sam Haiby - 5-9 - So. - G - 10.4 ppg, 2.4 rpg
5 - Nicea Eliely - 6-1 - Sr. - G - 8.6 ppg, 5.6 rpg
Off the Bench
32 - Leigha Brown - 6-1 - So. - F - 14.3 ppg, 3.3 rpg
34 - Isabelle Bourne - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 4.8 ppg, 4.4 rpg
33 - Taylor Kissinger - 6-1 - Jr. - G - 5.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg
14 - Grace Mitchell - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 2.5 ppg, 1.6 rpg
11 - Kristian Hudson - 5-5 - RSr. - G - 1.9 ppg, 1.1 rpg
44 - Kayla Mershon - 6-3 - So. - F - 1.8 ppg, 2.9 rpg
1 - Makenzie Helms - 5-8 - Fr. - G - 0.7 ppg, 0.7 rpg
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
Fourth Season at Nebraska (49-50); 13th Season Overall (242-159)
Duke Blue Devils (6-2, 0-0 ACC)
5 - Leaonna Odom - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 14.5 ppg, 5.8 rpg
24 - Onome Akinbode-James - 6-3 - So. - F/C - 6.3 ppg, 5.1 rpg
25 - Jade Williams - 6-5 - Jr. - F/C - 7.4 ppg, 4.4 rpg
2 - Haley Gorecki - 6-0 - Gr. - G - 18.3 ppg, 6.5 rpg
3 - Miela Goodchild - 5-10 - So. - G - 11.3 ppg, 3.9 rpg
Off the Bench
11 - Azana Baines - 6-1 - Fr. - F - 6.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg
4 - Jada Claude - 6-0 - Fr. - G/F - 4.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg
15 - Kyra Lambert - 5-9 - Gr. - G - 2.8 ppg, 1.9 rpg
0 - Jaida Patrick - 5-10 - Fr. - G/F - 2.0 ppg, 1.3 rpg
13 - Uchenna Nwoke - 6-6 - So. - C - 0.7 ppg, 1.0 rpg
30 - Emily Schubert - 6-4 - Sr. - C - 0.0 ppg, 1.0 rpg
Head Coach: Joanne P. McCallie (Northwestern, 1987)
13th Season at Duke (323-97); 28th Season Overall: (634-245)
• Duke comes to Lincoln riding a four-game winning streak to improve to 6-2 overall on the young season.
• All six of Duke's wins this season have been by double digits, including weekend wins over Davidson (82-52) and Penn (66-50) in Durham.
• Duke's losses have come at the hands of No. 6 Texas A&M (79-58) on the road (Nov. 10) and to Northwestern at Cameron Indoor Stadium (63-42, Nov. 17).
• The Blue Devils are led by Ann Meyers Drysdale Award candidate Haley Gorecki, who is averaging 18.3 points, 6.5 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.6 steals per game. The 6-0 guard has also knocked down a team-best 17 threes on the season and is shooting nearly 90 percent from the free throw line. Gorecki, who owns three 20-plus scoring efforts this season including a season-high 30 in a win over Idaho State, needs 24 points to join Duke's 1,000-point club. The Parade High School All-American was the Illinois Player of the Year in 2015.
• Leaonna Odom, a 6-2 senior forward, has added 14.5 points and 5.8 rebounds. Odom, who owns 1,104 points and 601 rebounds in her career, is in her fourth year as a starter for the Blue Devils and is a Katrina McClain Award candidate this season. Odom is coming off a 23-point, 16-rebound performance in Friday's win over Penn.
• Sophomore Miela Goodchild gives Duke four starters averaging in double figures with 11.3 points per game. Goodchild, a 5-10 guard from Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, also leads Duke with 2.1 steals per game, while adding 3.9 rebounds. She was a teammate of Nebraska freshman Isabelle Bourne on Australia's silver medal winning team at the 2019 FIBA U19 World Cup in Bangkok, Thailand this summer. Last season, Goodchild started 22 games for the Blue Devils and averaged 10.9 points per game while knocking down 73 threes (.445). She also hit 87 percent of her free throws.
• Fellow sophomore Onome Akinbode-James also returns to the Duke starting five. The 6-3 forward/center is averaging 6.3 points and 5.1 rebounds, after averaging 4.0 points and 5.4 boards while making 22 starts a year ago. Akinbode-James is a native of Abeokuta, Nigeria. She had 12 points and 12 rebounds to go along with three blocks off the bench in last Wednesday's win over Davidson, before moving back into the starting lineup for the win over Penn.
• Junior Jade Williams rounds out Duke's probable starting five by averaging 7.4 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. The 6-5 forward/center from Texas was a McDonald's All-American and ranked among the top 25 prospects in the nation by every recruiting service coming out of The Colony High School. A Lisa Leslie Award candidate, she scored a season-high 12 points, including two threes, against Davidson. She opened the year with 12 points and two threes in a win over High Point.
• A trio of freshmen have provided Duke with talented depth this season. Jada Claude, a 6-0 wing from Fayetteville, Ga., has split time in the starting lineup with Onome Akinbode-James. Claude has made three starts and is averaging 4.0 points and 5.0 rebounds.
• Azana Baines, a 6-1 freshman forward, was a top-100 recruit nationally and is averaging 6.9 points and 4.6 rebounds off the bench early in her career.
• Jaida Patrick, a 5-10 wing, has managed 2.0 points and 1.3 rebounds. She was a top-100 prospect out of Saddle River Day School.
• Graduate student Kyra Lambert is one of seven Blue Devils to play in all eight games this season. The 2015 WBCA and McDonald's High School All-American out of Cibolo, Texas, was a top-10 high school recruit but suffered a torn ACL in her left knee during the 2017 NCAA Tournament. That injury kept her out for the entire 2017-18 season. She then suffered another torn ACL during preseason in 2018-19, undergoing surgery in November of 2018 before missing another entire season. She is averaging 2.8 points and 1.9 rebounds in 13 minutes per game this year. She started 56 games in her first two seasons at Duke.
• Another top-25 national recruit, Mikayla Boykin has not played this season and has missed a majority of her first two college seasons with major knee injuries. As a true freshman in 2017-18, Boykin started eight times in Duke's first 10 games before tearing the ACL in her left knee on Dec. 10, 2017. She returned to play eight games last season, after missing the first seven games, only to reinjure her knee against Miami (Jan. 17, 2019).
• As a team, Duke is averaging 72.8 points per game while allowing 62.1 points per contest. The Blue Devils have hit 43.3 percent of their field goals and 35 percent (42-120) of their threes, while knocking down 71.2 percent of their free throws. They have held opponents to 35.8 percent shooting, including 28.6 percent (64-224) from three. Duke owns a plus 5.4 edge on the glass but a minus-0.5 turnover margin.
Nebraska vs. Duke Series History
• Nebraska and Duke have split the two previous meetings in series history and both involved high level basketball teams.
• In the last meeting between the Big Red and the Blue Devils (also in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge), the No. 12 Huskers defeated No. 9 Duke 60-54 at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Dec. 3, 2014. All-America point guard Rachel Theriot led Nebraska with a game-high 17 points, while Hailie Sample added 16 points on 6-for-6 shooting from the field. Emily Cady added a double-double with 13 points, 11 rebounds and four assists.
• The 2015 Huskers advanced to the NCAA Tournament, while Duke went to the Sweet Sixteen.
• In the first meeting between the two schools, No. 5 Duke worked its way to a 53-45 win over the No. 24 Huskers in the NCAA Sweet Sixteen in Norfolk, Va., on March 31, 2013. All-American and first-round WNBA draft pick Lindsey Moore led the Huskers with 11 points and six assists in her final game. All-American Jordan Hooper added six points and 11 rebounds before leaving the game midway through the second half with an ankle injury. Duke All-American Elizabeth Williams produced 10 points, nine rebounds and seven blocks, while Alexis Jones had 14 points and nine rebounds. Tricia Liston led Duke with 17 points while contributing eight boards. In a defensive struggle, the two teams went a combined 7-for-40 from three-point range.
• The 2013 Duke team went on to lose to Notre Dame in the Elite Eight.
• Kate Cain owns Nebraska's longest streak of consecutive starts (69).
• Nicea Eliely owns Nebraska's second-longest streak of starts (64).
• Eliely was the only Husker to score in all 30 games last season, and the only Husker to score in all of Nebraska's games against Big Ten Conference foes. She has scored in 42 consecutive games overall. She did not score in a win over Penn State on Feb. 22, 2018, the only time in the past three seasons (including 2019-20, 69 games) that Eliely was shut out.
• Leigha Brown had her streak of eight straight games scoring in double figures snapped when she managed six points in a win over Sacred Heart (Nov. 30).
• The Huskers have knocked down at least one three in 350 straight games dating back to a loss at UTEP on Dec. 20, 2008. Nebraska has hit at least two three-pointers in 229 consecutive games.
Numbers to Watch
• (2) Sam Haiby is two assists away from 100 in her career.
• (3) Hannah Whitish is three assists away from 400 in her career.
• (5) Kate Cain is five blocks from No. 3 on the Nebraska career list (207, Danielle Page, 2005-08). Page earned a bronze medal with the Serbian National Team at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
• (5) Hannah Whitish is five assists away from tying Stacy Imming (1984-87) at No. 7 (402) on the Nebraska career assist list.
• (7) Kristian Hudson needs seven assists to reach 400 in her career (383 at FIU).
• (9) Kristian Hudson needs 11 rebounds to reach 400 in her career (372 at FIU).
• (100) Hannah Whitish is expected to be playing in her 100th career game, Wednesday against Duke.
• Nebraska Coach Amy Williams shoots for her 50th win at the helm of the Huskers.
• Senior guard Hannah Whitish is set to appear in her 100th game in a Husker uniform.
• Through eight games, Nebraska is allowing an average of 57.0 points per game, after allowing 70.1 points per game last season. Nebraska's 2018 NCAA Tournament team surrendered 63.6 points per game.
• Opponents are shooting just 31.9 percent from the field and 26.5 percent from three-point range early this season against the Huskers. Last year, Husker foes hit 41.1 percent of their shots, including 33.4 percent from long range. In 2017-18, Nebraska led the Big Ten in field goal percentage defense (.371) and three-point field goal percentage defense (.299).
• Nebraska has held six opponents to 55 points or less through eight games this season. Last year, NU held only two foes (Radford-39, Kansas-52) to 55 or less.
• In 2017-18, Nebraska held 11 of 32 opponents to 55 points or less.
• Nebraska's bench has outscored the opposing bench in all eight games this season. The Huskers have outscored the opponent bench in 36 of the last 38 games.
• The Husker bench has outscored the opponent bench by double digits 27 times in the last 38 games, including a 30-1 edge in a loss to 2019 NCAA Elite Eight qualifier Iowa (Feb. 25, 2019).
Tipoff at McCamish Pavilion on the Georgia Tech campus is set for 6:15 p.m. (central) and the matchup between the Huskers and Yellow Jackets will be televised on ESPNU with Mike Monaco and Malcolm Huckaby on the call. The game will also be available on the ESPN app and on ESPN.com with authentication.
Fans can follow all of the action across the state of Nebraska on the Learfield-IMG Husker Sports Network with Kent Pavelka and Jake Muhleisen on the call. The game will also be available on Huskers.com, the Huskers app and TuneIn radio. The pregame show begins one hour prior to tipoff.
|GAME 8: vs. GEORGIA TECH|
Big Ten/ACC Challenge
Date: Wed., Dec. 4
Time: 6:15 p.m. (CT)
Location: Atlanta, Ga.
Arena: McCamish Pavilion
2019-20 Record: 4-3
Head coach: Fred Hoiberg
Record at Nebraska: 4-3 (1st year)
Career NCAA Record: 119-59 (6th year)
GEORGIA TECH YELLOW JACKETS
2019-20 Record: 3-2
Head coach: Josh Pastner
Record at Georgia Tech: 29-54 (4th year)
Career Record: 195-127 (11th year)
Play-by-play: Mike Monaco
Analyst: Malcolm Huckaby
Online Broadcast: ESPN app
Radio: Learfield-IMG Husker Sports Network, including 590 AM (Omaha), 1400 AM (Lincoln) and 880 AM (Lexington)
Play-by-play: Kent Pavelka
Analyst: Jake Muhleisen
Online Radio: Available on Huskers.com, Huskers App, TuneIn.com/Huskers and TuneIn App.
Cheatham, who played in just 10 games last year at Florida Gulf Coast before shoulder surgery, has rebounded nicely after a slow start in his final collegiate season. He is averaging 16.0 points per game on 67 percent shooting over the Huskers' last five contests. He has four double-figure performances in that stretch, culminating with the performance against South Florida.
The Huskers have performed well in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, going 5-3 all-time, including a 3-1 mark in road games since joining the Big Ten prior to the 2011-12 campaign.
Georgia Tech is 3-2 on the season following a 68-65 win over Bethune-Cookman on Sunday. In that game, Michael Davoe had a game-high 27 points, while James Banks III (12 points, 10 rebounds, 8 blocks) and Moses Wright (12 points, 12 rebounds) both put up double-doubles for the winners. The Yellow Jackets have played their share of close games, as four of their five contests have been decided by four points or less.
Dachon Burke Jr. is among the Big Ten leaders with steals at 1.3 per game. He has averaged 1.8 steals per game during his collegiate career including his two seasons at Robert Morris. Burke's five steals against George Mason marked the fourth time in his career he has had five-or-more steals in a game.
NUMBERS TO KNOW
4 - Double-digit performances from Kevin Cross, which is the most by a Husker freshman since 2016-17 (5-Jeriah Horne and 4-Jordy Tshimanga). Cross is fourth among Big Ten freshmen in scoring at 9.4 ppg entering this week's action.
5 - Three-pointers this season for Thorir Thorbjarnarson, as he is 5-of-12 from long range. In his first two seasons, he went a combined 6-of-28 behind the 3-point stripe.
6.0 - Assists per game for sophomore Cam Mack, which is on pace to be the highest average since Brian Carr averaged 6.7 assists per game in 1986-87.
7 - Nebraska has had seven players reach double-figures in the first seven games of the season. Nebraska has five players averaging at least nine points per game, including four in double figures.
50- Returning point total from last season, all by Thorir Thorbjarnarson. That is the lowest by any power conference team since the 2009-10 season.
80.5 - Nebraska's scoring average since the opening-night loss to UC Riverside. The Huskers have scored 70-or-more points in five of their last six contests.
SCOUTING GEORGIA TECH
Georgia Tech comes into Wednesday's game with a 3-2 mark after holding off Bethune-Cookman, 68-65 on Sunday. In that game, Michael Devoe's three-point play with seven seconds left broke a 65-all tie and capped a 27-point performance, only earning the win after Leon Redd's 3-point try at the buzzer bounced off the rim for Bethune-Cookman.
Josh Pastner is in his fourth season at the helm of the Georgia Tech program and guided the Yellow Jackets to an NIT finals appearance in his first season at the school, but the 22 wins that season were vacated by the NCAA Committee on Infractions. The Yellow Jackets went 14-18 in 2018-19 and finished 10th in the ACC with a 6-12 mark. Prior to taking over at Georgia Tech, Pastner led Memphis to five postseason appearances in seven years at the school, including a pair of appearances in the round of 32.
Georgia Tech returns its top three scorers from last season and its starting lineup from its final two games of the 2018-19 season. In all, 11 letterwinners returned and the program added a pair of transfers to the lineup. The Yellow Jackets were picked to finish 12th in the preseason ACC poll. In the first month of the season, Georgia Tech been in its share of close games, as the two losses are by a combined five points, while GT also has a one-point overtime win over North Carolina State.
For Georgia Tech, it starts with a pair of guards and one of the ACC's top defensive players. Devoe has been one of the ACC's most prolific scorers in the first month of the year, averaging a conference-best 23.4 points per game, including a national-best 62 percent from 3-point range. He has four 20-point games already, including a season-high 34-point performance against Georgia. Junior point guard Jose Alvarado led Georgia Tech in scoring (12.5 ppg), assists (3.4 apg) and steals (1.8 spg) last season, but was averaging just 6.0 ppg in the first two games while playing through an ankle injury. His status for Wednesday's game is unknown. Senior forward James Banks III is a force in the middle, averaging 13.4 points, 9.6 rebounds and 5.2 blocks per game to lead the nation in that category. Banks already has three double-doubles in Georgia Tech's first five games.
Series History: The teams have met only once previously, a 66-49 Georgia Tech win in the first round of the Cotton States Classic in Atlanta. Dave Hoppen led NU with 19 points, but was the only Husker to finish in double figures.
LAST TIME OUT
Haanif Cheatham scored a career-high 26 points while Dachon Burke Jr. hit two crucial 3-pointers in the final 3:34, as Nebraska took third place in the Cayman Islands Classic with a 74-67 win over South Florida on Nov. 27.
Cheatham hit 8-of-11 from the field and 9-of-11 from the line as he eclipsed his previous career best of 24 set as a freshman at Marquette. Cheatham, who averaged 19.3 ppg on 70 percent shooting in three games, earned a spot on the all-tournament team.
While Cheatham enjoyed a career night, Burke stepped up after South Florida ran off seven straight points to trim an eight-point Husker lead to 63-62. The junior guard hit a long 3-pointer from the wing to snap the run and stretch the lead to four. South Florida was within 66-63 before Burke's second 3-pointer with 1:59 left made it a six-point cushion, capping a season-high 21-point performance for the junior guard.
USF made one last charge and was within 71-67 before the Huskers sealed the win by going 3-of-4 from the line with Cheatham icing the game with a pair of free throws with 13 seconds left. In all, the Huskers were 14-of-19 from the foul line in moving to 4-3 on the season.
Nebraska shot 55 percent from the floor, including 6-of-14 from 3-point range, while holding South Florida (3-4) to 39 percent, including 36 percent in the second half.
NEBRASKA BIG TEN/ACC CHALLENGE PRIMER
The 2019-20 season marks the 21st edition of the Big Ten/ACC Challenge presented by Continental Tire. The Big Ten is 5-12-3 all-time in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, but 5-2-3 over the last decade. In case of a tie, the Cup remains with the conference that won the event most recently (in this case the ACC in 2017). The two conferences went 7-7 last season.
• Nebraska is 5-3 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge since joining the Big Ten in the 2011-12 season and joins Purdue (10-8) as the only two Big Ten programs with winning records.
• Nebraska has won five of its last seven challenge games, including road wins at Wake Forest (2012), at Florida State (2015) and Clemson (2018) along with the home wins over Miami (2013) and Boston College (2017).
• Of Nebraska's three losses, two have been by two points (55-53 to Wake Forest in 2011; 60-58 at Clemson in 2016) while the other one was a 77-72 overtime loss to Miami in 2015.
• Nebraska's current two-game win streak is the longest of any Big Ten program.
• NU's three road wins ranks second among Big Ten programs, despite not joining the conference until 2011.
Big Ten/ACC Challenge History
|2017||at Clemson||W, 68-66|
|2017||Boston College||W, 71-62|
|2016||at Clemson||L, 58-60|
|2015||No. 21 Miami||L, 72-77 (ot)|
|2014||at Florida State||W, 70-65|
|2012||at Wake Forest||W, 79-63|
|2011||Wake Forest||L, 53-55|
DID YOU KNOW
• Wednesday's game begins a stretch of three straight road games, as the Huskers travel to Omaha for the annual in-state matchup with Creighton on Saturday before opening Big Ten play at Indiana on Friday, Nov. 13. Including last week's Cayman Islands Classic, Nebraska will go 24 days between home games. The six-game stretch is the longest since the 1997-98 season.
• Through the first seven games, 76.9 percent of the Huskers' offense has come from players who were added in the offseason, including six of Nebraska's top seven scorers.
• Only one player on Nebraska's roster has played in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, and that is sit-out transfer Shamiel Stevenson. He played 13 minutes against Penn State in 2017 when he was at Pittsburgh, recording two points and dishing out three assists against the Nittany Lions.
• One of the biggest points of emphasis for Hoiberg and his staff has been to shoot better from 3-point range, and that work has paid off in the last two weeks. Over the last four games, NU is shooting nearly 45 percent from 3-point range and averaging 9.3 3-pointers per game after shooting just 23 percent in the first three games of the season.
Huskers' 3-Point Improvement
|Category||First 3 Games||Last 4 Games|
|3 Pt. Pct.||.231||.446|
• As a team, the Huskers have shot 49 percent or better from the floor in four of their last five contests after shooting 34 percent in the first two games of the year.
• Wednesday's win over South Florida marked the first time since the season opener where the Huskers didn't have four players in double figures, but also was the first time that NU had multiple 20-point scorers in a game under Fred Hoiberg. The Huskers put five players in double figures against Washington State, the first time Huskers accomplished the feat since a win over Creighton last December.
• The Huskers have averaged more than 80 points per game since the opening night loss to UC Riverside, including 90+ points in consecutive games against South Dakota State (90) and Southern (93). That marked the first time that the Huskers have scored 90 or more points in consecutive games since the 1999-2000 season.
• Senior guard Haanif Cheatham earned a spot on the Cayman Islands Classic All-Tournament team, as he averaged 19.0 ppg on 70 percent shooting, inclding 5-of-8 from 3-point range, in helping the Huskers to a 2-1 mark. Cheatham had 19 points and seven boards in the win over Washington State and a career-high 26 point night against South Florida. He needs just 73 to reach 1,000 points for his career.
• Nebraska enters Wednesday's game second in the Big Ten in turnover margin at +3.0 per game as Nebraska's 11.9 turnovers per game ranks second to Michigan State. During his tenure at Iowa State, Hoiberg's teams ranked in the top three in fewest turnovers per game in four of his five seasons at the school.
• Nebraska's 14 first-year players on the roster matches TCU for the most in the nation in research done by the Utah SID John Vu. Only four teams (TCU-14, Nebraska-14, East Carolina-13 and Utah-12) have at least 12 newcomers on their 2019-20 rosters. Nebraska returns a national-low 1.9 percent of its scoring from last season and the 50 returning points is the lowest by any power conference team since 2009.
Fewest Returning PPG from 2018-19
|No.||School||Returning PPG||Pct. of Scoring|
|3.||South Dakota St.||15.8 PPG||16.9%|
|4.||Virginia Tech||13.3 PPG||18.1%|
|Courtesy: Virginia Tech SID office|
• Nebraska has already played two overtime games in the first month of the season. The school record for OT games is four, set most recently during the 2007-08 campaign.
• Cam Mack's 13-point, 11-assist performance vs. Southern Utah on Nov. 9 marked just the sixth time in the last 30 years that a Husker has had a points-assist double-double. Mack is third in the Big Ten with 6.0 assists per game and has three games with at least seven assists.
Husker Points/Assists Double-Doubles (Last 30 years)
|Cam Mack||13||11||vs. Southern Utah, 11/11/19|
|Glynn Watson Jr.||10||10||vs. Cal State Fullerton, 12/20/18|
|Lance Jeter||10||10||vs. Kansas, 2/5/11|
|Lance Jeter||12||12||at Kansas State, 2/7/10|
|Sek Henry||11||11||at TCU, 11/21/09|
|Tom Wald||11||11||vs. Appalachian State, 12/31/94|
SETTING A FAST PACE
Not only are the Huskers adjusting to a whole new roster, but playing at a significantly faster pace than in previous years. The Huskers are 57th nationally in adjusted tempo, averaging 72.6 possessions per 40 minutes. NU is third in the Big Ten in tempo after ranking eighth in the Big Ten and 238th nationally in 2018-19.
• Hoiberg's first Iowa State team in 2010-11 jumped from 93rd to 34th nationally in tempo and ranked in the top 40 nationally in tempo in four of his five seasons in Ames, including top-15 nationally in his last two campaigns.
• In the KenPom era (1997-present), only one Husker team has ranked among the top 100 nationally in tempo - the 1999-2000 Huskers under Danny Nee.
• While playing at a fast pace, the Huskers are also second in the Big Ten in fewest turnovers per game at 11.9.
JUCO ADDITIONS AMONG THE NATION'S BEST
Two of the cornerstones of the Huskers' recruiting class were junior college transfers Cam Mack and Jervay Green. Mack (third) and Green (eighth) were both ranked in the top 10 nationally by JUCORecruiting.com in the 2019 recruiting class and have played a crucial role for the Huskers early in 2019-20.
Mack, who was listed as the top JC point guard recruit in the country, enters the Georgia Tech averaging 12.6 points per game while leading the Huskers in assists (6.0), steals (1.6) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.2-to-1). He is also second in rebounding at 4.9 caroms per game.
• Mack is the only Big Ten player who ranks in the top five in both assists (third) and steals (fifth)
• He has reached double figures five times, including a season-high 24-point performance against South Dakota State on Nov. 15. He had 11 points and nine rebounds in the opener before nearly pulling a triple-double against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 with 13 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds on Nov. 9. His 11 assists against the Thunderbirds were the most by a Husker since the 2009-10 campaign. Green had 16 points and eight assists in the win over Southern.
• Last season at Salt Lake CC, Mack averaged 19.1 points, 7.6 assists and 5.9 rebounds per game, ranking fifth nationally in assists per game. He totaled nine double-doubles and three triple doubles as a freshman and dished out 10-or-more assists nine times.
Green was rated as the No. 2 combo guard nationally after a stint at Western Nebraska CC, has been a jack-of-all-trades for the Big Red, averaging 10.3 points along with 4.7 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. He ranks on the top three on the squad in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals, blocks and 3-pointers.
• He nearly posted a double-double against Washington State with 16 points and eight rebounds in 27 minutes.
• Green turned in his best performance of the year against Southern on Nov. 22, scoring 22 points and dishing out six assists in the win overtime win. His two 3-pointers helped key a 10-0 spurt in overtime to
seal the win.
• He nearly had a double-double against Southern Utah with 18 points and a team-high eight rebounds, as he sent the game into overtime with a 3-pointer at the buzzer.
• Green garnered NJCAA All-America honors at WNCC, averaging 23.6 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game. He was eighth nationally in scoring and had six 30-point games, including a school-record 51-point outburst.
CHEATHAM MAKES IMPACT ON BOTH ENDS
Fifth-year senior Haanif Cheatham has been one of the leaders for a young Husker team. The guard from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., is NU's most experienced player, as he played in 80 games between Marquette and Florida Gulf Coast before transferring to Nebraska for his final year. Cheatham's biggest impact has been on the defensive end, where he has the ability to guard multiple spots.
Cheatham got off to a slow start in the first two games, but enjoyed a breakout performance against South Dakota State on Nov. 15, finishing with 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting, six rebounds and three assists. Since that performance, Cheatham has been averaging 16.0 points and 4.8 rebounds per game while also shooting nearly 50 percent from 3-point range. He was in double figures all three games of the Cayman Islands Classic, averaging 19.0 ppg including a career-best 26-point effort against South Florida.
A former top-100 recruit out of high school, he was named Marquette's top defensive performer in each of his two full seasons at Marquette.
BURKE SHOWS SCORING TOUCH
The other returnee from the 2018-19 season, Dachon Burke Jr. waited in the wings after transferring from Robert Morris. A 6-foot-4 guard, Burke has quickly shown the skills to flourish in Fred Hoiberg's attack, averaging a team-high 13.6 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. Burke has reached double figures five times, including a 17-point, seven-rebound effort against South Dakota State on Nov. 15 and a 21-point performance against South Florida on Nov. 27. Two years ago, Burke was one of the best players in the Northeast Conference, averaging 17.6 points per game while adding 5.8 rebounds and a conference-best 2.1 steals per contest.
OUEDRAOGO ADDS NAME TO SHORT LIST OF TRUE FROSH
Freshman Yvan Ouedraogo became the first true freshman to start a season opener at Nebraska since 2013 when he started against UC Riverside on Nov. 5.
• Ouedraogo, who became the first true freshman to start in the frontcourt since Brandon Ubel in 2009, had nine points, three rebounds and a pair of steals and a blocked shot in 21 minutes of action.
• He is just the 11th true freshman and 13th freshman overall to start a season opener in the last 25 years at Nebraska, joining a group which includes 1,000-point scorers Tai Webster, Ryan Anderson, Cookie Belcher and Tyronn Lue.
• Ouedraogo has started all seven games for the Huskers, averaging 5.7 points and a team-high 5.0 rebounds per game in just under 20 minutes per game.
• He enjoyed his offensive effort of the season with 11 points, including six in overtime, and four rebounds against Southern on Nov. 22. He snared a team-high 12 rebounds against South Dakota State on Nov. 15.
Ouedraogo, who doesn't turn 18 until after the 2020 Big Ten Tournament, played for the French U-18 squad at the 2019 European Championships in July, averaging 4.0 points, 3.6 rebounds per game as France went 6-1 and finished fifth in the competition.
CROSS LIFTS BENCH PRODUCTION
Freshman Kevin Cross has been an early contributor for the Huskers. The 6-foot-8 freshman from Little Rock, Ark., has been the first Husker off the bench in all seven games and ranks fifth on the team in scoring at 9.4 points per game while chipping in 3.6 rebounds per game.
• Cross has found his shooting touch in recent games, shooting 55 percent (26-of-47) in his last six contests. He had shot 50 percent or better from the field in five straight games before being held scoreless against South Florida.
• He played a complete game in the win over Washington State, scoring 14 points, grabbing a season-high eight rebounds and blocking two shots in 27 minutes
• Cross played a big role in NU's comeback against Southern, scoring all eight of his points in the second half as the Huskers overcame an eight-point deficit.
• He was efficient against South Dakota State, finishing with 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting and two blocked shots.
• Against Southern Utah, he had a team-high 19 points, becoming the first freshman in 73 games to pace the Huskers in scoring. His 19 point effort was the highest by a Husker rookie since Shavon Shields in 2013.
• Cross has lost nearly 20 pounds since arriving on campus this summer, and showed glimpses of his potential during NU's trip to Italy, reaching double figures twice in four contests.
KAVAS IS ONE OF NATION'S TOP SHOOTERS
Senior transfer Matej Kavas comes to Nebraska with a reputation as one of the nation's top 3-point shooters. The 6-foot-8 guard is a career 44 percent shooter from 3-point range, and has shot 40 percent or better in all three of his seasons at Seattle. Kavas' .440 career percentage ranks seventh among active Division I players. As a sophomore at Seattle, Kavas led the WAC in both 3-point percentage (.464)
and 3-pointers per game (2.8).
• To put Kavas' shooting in perspective, Nebraska's career mark for career 3-point percentage is .432 by Brian Conklin (2001-04) and only five players in school history have shot 40 percent in their Husker career with a minimum of 100 3-pointers.
• Kavas' 183 career 3-pointers would ranks sixth on NU's career list while his 91 3-pointers as a sophomore would top NU's single-season mark (Cary Cochran, 89, 2001-02).
• He is shooting just 30 percent so far this season from 3-point range, but has enjoyed three double-figure efforts, most recently against George Mason on Nov. 26.
Top Active 3-Point Shooters in Division I (as of Dec. 1)
|1.||Luke Avdalovic, Northern Ariz.||So.||34||89||178||.500|
|2.||Ladan Ricketts, Montana St.||Sr.||38||87||185||.470|
|3.||Tyrell Gumbs-Frater, Coastal Carolina||Sr.||56||119||254||.469|
|4.||Justin Jaworski, Lafayette||Jr.||65||162||352||.460|
|5.||Storm Murphy, Wofford||Jr.||75||111||250||.444|
|6.||Jordan Dartis, Ohio||Sr.||100||258||586||.440|
|7.||Matej Kavas, Nebraska||Sr.||91||183||416||.440|
WHAT'S BACK FOR THE HUSKERS
Nebraska returns one letterwinner and one other player from last year's team that went 19-17 and reached the second round of the NIT. Junior guard Thorir Thorbjarnarson was the only player who has seen regular-season action for the Huskers entering the 2019-20 campaign. He averaged 2.0 points and 2.1 rebounds per game last year.
• According to research by noted basketball statistician Ken Pomeroy, the 50 returning points on Nebraska's 2019-20 roster is the lowest total for a power conference team since 2009, when Indiana returned just 28 points from the previous season.
• Since 2000, it is only the fourth time where the Huskers have returned less than 40 percent of the team's scoring output from the previous year (also 2012-13, 2009-10 and 2001-02). In that stretch, the lowest was 24 percent in 2012-13.
• The seven returning starts are the lowest in the last 20 years (41 entering 2001-02).
What's Returning (Last Five Seasons)
|Pct. of scoring||1.9||73.4||50.0||45.8||40.0|
|Pct. of rebounding||4.2||61.4||44.9||51.9||33.3|
|Pct. of assists||6.2||71.5||48.9||52.6||51.1|
|Pct. of blocked shots||3.3||67.2||47.4||64.3||15.6|
|Pct. of steals||5.4||68.0||61.1||51.6||52.6|
|Pct. of minutes||4.2||74.5||55.4||52.4||42.4|
RETOOLING A ROSTER IN SIX WEEKS
Fred Hoiberg and his staff retooled the Nebraska roster following his introduction in early April. The Huskers signed a recruiting class that was in the top 50 nationally in just six weeks. The 14-member class includes 11 scholarship players and three walk-ons and is a mixture of grad transfers, transfers, JUCOs and freshmen.
2019 Recruiting Class Highlights
• Ranked No. 41 nationally by 247Sports, the program's second-highest class ranking since joining the Big Ten.
• Features two of the top-10 recruits nationally by JUCORecruiting.com, the highest two JC signees NU has signed this decade.
• Includes five Division I transfers who have combined for more than 2,300 points, 1,000 rebounds and 350 assists at their previous schools.
• Has two Division I transfers (Dalano Banton and Haanif Cheatham) who were top-100 recruits in high school and two freshmen who were both top-150 recruits in 2019 by 247Sports (Kevin Cross and Ivan Ouedraogo).
• Contains two high school state players of the year (Akol Arop and Samai Curtis) and two others who were first-team all-state in 2019 (Cross and Charlie Easley).
• Includes players from seven states (Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio and Texas) and three countries (Canada, France and Slovenia).
FROM COLLEGE TO THE NBA AND BACK AGAIN
Nebraska's Fred Hoiberg is in an exclusive club, as he is one of just 10 current Division I coaches to coach in Division I and in the NBA. He spent three-plus seasons with the Chicago Bulls, guiding the Bulls to the NBA Playoffs in 2016. Hoiberg's 270 regular-season NBA games are the most of the 10 former NBA coaches in the collegiate ranks. Hoiberg also brings five years of NBA front office experience, as he worked with the Minnesota Timberwolves from 2005 to 2010.
|Coach, School||NBA Head Coach, Years|
|Fred Hoiberg, Nebraska||Chicago, 2015-18|
|Larry Krystkowiak, Utah||Milwaukee, 2007-08|
|Terry Porter, Portland||Milwaukee, 2003-05; Phoenix 2008-09|
|Lon Kruger, Oklahoma||Atlanta, 2000-03|
|Eric Musselman, Arkansas||Golden State, 2002-04; Sacramento, 2006-07|
|Mike Dunlap, Loyola Marymount||Charlotte, 2012-13|
|Darrell Walker, Ark. Little Rock||Toronto, 1996-98; Washington, 1999-2000|
|John Calipari, Kentucky||New Jersey, 1996-99|
|Leonard Hamilton, Miami||Washington, 2000-01|
|Lindsey Hunter, Miss. Valley State||Phoenix, 2013|
HUSKER FAMILY TIES RUN DEEP FOR HOIBERG
While Fred Hoiberg grew up in Ames and played his high school (Ames High School) and college basketball (Iowa State) there, he was born in Lincoln and has numerous ties to the city and to the University of Nebraska.
• Fred's father (Eric) and mother (Karen) both earned their undergraduate degrees from Nebraska in 1966. In fact, Eric earned his undergraduate degree, Master's degree, and Ph.D. in sociology from the university. His 1973 dissertation was "Socio-economic status, residential location, and intrametropolitan mobility: a longitudinal analysis".
• His maternal grandfather was former Husker basketball coach Jerry Bush. Known as the "Big Bear of the Coliseum," Bush guided NU from 1955 to 1963, and directed two of the greatest upsets ever – a 43-
41 victory over top-ranked Kansas and Wilt Chamberlain, and a 55-48 victory over No. 4 Kansas State and Olympian Bob Boozer during the 1957-58 campaign.
• His paternal grandfather (Otto) received his Master's Degree and Ph.D from Nebraska. He joined the faculty of the University of Nebraska in 1948, where he taught sociology and served as director of the community development program in the University of Nebraska Extension Division.
YOU CAN GO HOME AGAIN: PART 2
Assistant Coach Doc Sadler brings a unique perspective to the Husker basketball staff, as he returns to Lincoln after serving as the head coach at Southern Miss for the last five seasons. Sadler helped Southern Miss improve its win total in each of the last four seasons, including a 20-13 mark and Conference USA semifinal appearance in 2018-19. Sadler returns to a program that he served as head coach
for six seasons, guiding the Huskers to 101 wins and three postseason appearances in his six-year tenure.
It is rare for a coach to return to a program as an assistant coach, as the only other known example is Marty Wilson, who was the interim head coach at Pepperdine in 1996 before returning to the school as an assistant coach in 2008.
PINNACLE BANK ARENA SOLD OUT FOR 2019-20 SEASON
Since moving into Pinnacle Bank Arena in 2013, the Huskers have ranked in the top 15 in attendance nationally in each of the past six seasons. The streak will likely continue into 2019-20, as all available season tickets were sold out in August.
• Last season, Nebraska averaged 15,341 fans per home game to rank 10th nationally in attendance, matching the highest rank in school history.
• Nebraska is one of nine schools in the country to average 15,000+ fans per contest in each of the last six seasons, joining Kentucky, Syracuse, Louisville, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas and Creighton.
• The Big Ten Conference has led NCAA Basketball in attendance for 43 straight years, dating back to the 1976-77 season. Last season, Big Ten schools drew more than a combined three million fans for the fifth straight year.
Filling Up Pinnacle Bank Arena
|2013-14 (1st year of PBA)||15,419||13th|
TWO HUSKERS REPRESENT THEIR COUNTRIES
Thorir Thorbjarnarson and Yvan Ouedraogo spent part of the summer representing their home nations. Thorbjarnarson played in three games for Iceland's Senior National Team during the Games of the Small States of Europe, averaging 10 points per game. Ouedraogo played for France's U-18 team at the FIBA European Championships, as the team went 6-1 and earned a fifth-place finish. He averaged 4.0 points, 3.6 rebounds and 0.8 steals per game as the second-youngest member of the team.
In addition, former Huskers Tai Webster (New Zealand) and Jorge Brian Diaz (Puerto Rico) represented their nations in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. Diaz started all five games in helping Puerto Rico reach the second round, while Webster averaged 13.4 points and 4.8 assists as New Zealand's starting point guard.
STEVENSON DENIED NCAA WAIVER
Nebraska Athletics announced Nov. 26 that men's basketball player Shamiel Stevenson was denied a waiver and will not be eligible to compete until the start of the 2020-21 season.
Stevenson, a junior guard/forward from Toronto, Canada, will have two full years of eligibility remaining. He joins fellow transfers Dalano Banton and Derrick Walker as being eligible for the start of the 2020-21 season.
Stevenson transferred to Nebraska in May of 2019 from Nevada after Head Coach Eric Musselman took the Arkansas head coaching position. Stevenson began his career at Pittsburgh, where he played as a freshman, as well as four games as a sophomore before transferring at the end of the 2018 fall semester. Stevenson averaged 8.0 points and 4.1 rebounds per game in 36 games at Pittsburgh, and did not play at Nevada.
LINCOLN, Neb. - The Nebraska volleyball team was selected as the No. 5 overall seed for the NCAA Tournament on Sunday night and will host the NCAA Tournament first and second rounds at the Bob Devaney Sports Center next weekend.
The Huskers, making their 38th straight NCAA Tournament appearance, will open the tournament on Friday, Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. against the Ball State Cardinals (20-11), champions of the Mid-American Conference. The 4:30 p.m. match will feature the Northern Iowa Panthers (24-10) of the Missouri Valley Conference and the Missouri Tigers (21-7) of the SEC. Friday's winners will meet on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 7 p.m.
Baylor, Texas, Stanford and Wisconsin received the top four seeds from the NCAA Tournament committee. Should those teams all advance past the first weekend, they would host an NCAA regional the following weekend. Nebraska is in Wisconsin's region along with No. 12 national seed Hawaii and No. 13 Texas A&M. The Huskers would only have an opportunity to host an NCAA regional if they advance past the opening two rounds and Wisconsin gets upset in the first or second round.
Tickets to the first and second round in Lincoln will be available to purchase online at Huskers.com/tickets Sunday evening, or by calling 800-8-BIG RED beginning at 8 a.m. Monday. Streaming and broadcast information will be announced later this week.
The Huskers, who have been to the last four NCAA Semifinals and won National Championships in 2015 and 2017, finished the regular season 25-4 overall and 17-3 in the Big Ten Conference. Nebraska is 2-0 all-time against Ball State with the last meeting on Sept. 11, 2004 in Lincoln. The Cardinals are making their first tournament appearance since 2011. Missouri was Nebraska's NCAA second-round opponent at the Devaney Center last year. The Huskers played Northern Iowa in 2017 during the regular season in Omaha, dropping a 3-1 match.
The 2019 season marks the 35th time that Lincoln has hosted NCAA first and second round competition. Nebraska is 113-32 (.779) in 37 previous NCAA Tournament appearances. The 2019 Husker squad is looking to become the first Nebraska volleyball team to reach five consecutive final fours. This year's NCAA Championship is set for December 19-21 at PPG Paints Arena in Pittsburgh.
NCAA First and Second Round Schedule
First Round – Friday, Dec. 6
4:30 p.m. – Northern Iowa vs. Missouri
7 p.m.* – Ball State vs. Nebraska
*or 30 minutes following the conclusion of the 4:30 p.m. match, but no sooner than 7 p.m.
Second Round – Saturday, Dec. 7
7 p.m. – First Round Winners
It marked the second straight year Iowa won the annual Heroes Trophy game with a last-second field, as the Hawkeyes won their fifth straight game in the border rival series.
Iowa (8-3, 6-3 Big Ten) began its winning drive with 41 seconds remaining in regulation at its 26 yard-line. The Hawkeyes used consecutive passing plays of 22 yards from quarterback Nate Stanley to set up the game-winning field goal.
Nebraska (5-7, 3-6 Big Ten) ends its season for the second straight year after rallying in the second half to tie Iowa, only to fall at the end on a field goal.
Iowa held Nebraska to 284 yards of offense, yet the Huskers were able to overcome a 24-10 halftime deficit.
Nebraska cut Iowa's lead to 24-17 with a touchdown on its second drive of the third quarter. Junior running back Dedrick Mills, who led the Huskers with 94 rushing yards, had rushes of six and nine yards to help the Huskers drive from their 41-yard line to the Iowa 39.
Then freshman quarterback Luke McCaffrey, entering the series at quarterback, lofted a 39-yard touchdown pass to junior receiver JD Spielman, igniting the Memorial Stadium crowd. Spielman had three catches for 34 yards and extended his streak to 33 games with at least one reception.
The Blackshirts responded with a 3-and-out, and Nebraska, with sophomore Adrian Martinez back at quarterback, drove 60 yards in 13 plays for a game-tying touchdown. Martinez converted a key 4th-and-6 play with an 11-yard pass to sophomore wide receiver Kade Warner over the middle, and senior running back Wyatt Mazour scored three plays later on a nine-yard run up the middle, forcing a 24-24 tie heading into the fourth quarter.
Nebraska, which held Iowa to seven total yards in the third quarter, and to 17 total yards over the second and third quarters, forced 3-and-outs on Iowa's next two possessions. The Hawkeyes drove to the Nebraska 34 on their next series but pooch punted into the end zone, and used a 30-yard run from running back Mekhi Sargent to get to the Nebraska 33 the next time they had the ball.
But on the next play from scrimmage, senior linebacker Collin Miller forced a Sargent fumble that senior safety Cam Taylor-Britt recovered at the Nebraska 30-yard line with 2:52 remaining in regulation. The Huskers, though, couldn't muster a drive and punted, giving Iowa possession at its 26 yard-line with 41 seconds remaining in regulation, setting up the Hawkeyes' game-winning drive.
Iowa led 24-10 at halftime after scoring three long touchdowns, while Nebraska amassed only 114 yards of total offense, with five plays of negative yardage, all on first down. Iowa, which entered the game averaging 131.7 rushing yards, had 152 yards on the ground after one quarter, but only 73 over the rest of the game.
Iowa receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette scored on a 45-yard run on a reverse play on the Hawkeyes' second play of their second series, and the Hawkeyes jumped in front 7-0 with 11:04 to play in the first quarter.
Nebraska's ensuing drive stalled in Iowa territory, but senior punter Isaac Armstrong pinned the Hawkeyes on their 4-yard line. The Blackshirts then forced a three-and-out, giving Nebraska possession at the Iowa 38-yard line. That led to walk-on Matt Waldoch's 41-yard field goal that cut Iowa's lead to 7-3 with 4:03 remaining in the first quarter.
Iowa responded in two plays, with running back Tyler Goodson busting a 55-yard touchdown run up the middle for a 14-3 lead.
The Hawkeyes drove to the Nebraska 19-yard line on their next series before the Blackshirts bowed up and collected back-to-back plays of negative yardage. Junior defensive lineman Ben Stille had a tackle for a 9-yard loss, and senior defensive lineman Darrion Daniels followed with a tackle for a loss of 3 yards. Junior linebacker JoJo Domann then came up with a third-down tackle of no gain.
Iowa, though, salvaged the drive with a 49-yard field goal by Duncan, tying his career high for a 17-3 lead with 11:37 remaining in the second quarter.
Nebraska went 3-and-out on offense and punted, but on Iowa's second play of its ensuing series, Domann tipped a Stanley pass that Taylor-Britt intercepted and returned 38 yards down the sideline for a touchdown. Nebraska's third defensive touchdown of the season cut Iowa's lead to 17-10.
The momentum swing was short-lived, however, as Smith-Marsette returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown and a 24-10 Iowa lead. The scored was Iowa's first non-offensive touchdown of the season.
George Town, Grand Cayman – Haanif Cheatham scored a career-high 26 points while Dachon Burke Jr. hit two crucial 3-pointers in the final 3:34, as Nebraska took third place in the Cayman Islands Classic with a 74-67 win over South Florida Wednesday afternoon.
Cheatham hit 8-of-11 from the field and 9-of-11 from the line as he eclipsed his precious career best of 24 set as a freshman at Marquette. Cheatham, who averaged 19.3 ppg on 70 percent shooting in three games, earned a spot on the all-tournament team.
While Cheatham enjoyed a career night, Burke stepped up after South Florida ran off seven straight points to trim an eight-point Husker lead to 63-62. The junior guard hit a long 3-pointer from the wing to snap the run and stretch the lead to four. South Florida was within 66-63 before Burke’s second 3-pointer with 1:59 left made it a six-point cushion, capping a season-high 21-point performance for the junior guard.
USF made one last charge and was within 71-67 before the Huskers iced the game by going 3-of-4 from the line with Cheatham icing the game with a pair of free throws with 13 seconds left. In all, the Huskers were 14-of-19 from the foul line in moving to 4-3 on the season.
Nebraska shot 55 percent from the floor, including 6-of-14 from 3-point range, while holding South Florida (3-4) to 39 percent, including 36 percent in the second half.
In the first half, the Huskers used a quick start and withstood a USF run to trail 35-33 at the break. Cheatham had 11 first-half points on 4-of-5 shooting to pace the Big Red, as Nebraska shot 50 percent from the floor in the first half.
Nebraska hit four of its first six shots from the floor to build an early 10-5 lead after a Burke slam less than four minutes in before the Bulls charged back. South Florida used a 9-2 spurt of their own to take a 14-12 lead after a basket from Michael Durr.
Nebraska led 19-18 before South Florida, which shot 41 percent in the half, hit three straight 3-pointers, the last of which by Justin Brown gave the Bulls their largest lead of the half at 27-19 with 7:59 left in the half.
Nebraska rallied behind the play of Cheatham, who scored nine of his 11 first-half points in the final eight minutes of the half. The Huskers trailed 35-27 before consecutive 3-pointers from Jervay Green and Cheatham pulled NU within two at the break.
The teams traded the lead over the first five minutes of the second half before Davis Collins scored six straight points to give the Bulls a 51-46 advantage with 13:05 left. Collins finished with a team-high 16 points in a losing effort.
The Bulls eventually pushed the margin to seven before the Huskers rallied. Cheatham and Burke combined for 11 straight points before Thorir Thorbjarnarson’s basket capped a 13-0 blitz and gave the Huskers a 59-53 lead with 9:10 left.
Nebraska eventually stretched the lead to eight before the Bulls came back with seven straight points to pull within one and forced a Husker timeout with 3:49 left.
The Huskers will return to Lincoln and begin preparing for the matchup at Georgia Tech in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge next Wednesday, Dec. 4. Tipoff is at 6:15 p.m. and will be carried on ESPNU and available on the IMG-Learfield Husker Sports Network.