Tri-Cities

McCook

North Platte

Tri-Cities

Country 96 AM 1430 KRGI 97-3 The Wolf

McCook

Coyote Country 93.9 The Zone True Country 102.1

North Platte

Rock 100 Country 93.5 TBD

GNAC/Boys Final Scores 1/4 Columbus 57, McCook 38 North Platte 50, Gering 43 (CHAMPIONSHIP) Hastings 60, Scottsbluff 52.

GNAC/Girls Final Scores 1/4 Hastings 45, Columbus 40 McCook 67, Gering 51 (CHAMPIONSHIP) North Platte 64, SB 54

BRACKET




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The Nebraska football program announced today that running back Maurice Washington has been dismissed from the Husker team. Washington is expected to enter the NCAA transfer portal soon.





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The Nebraska women's basketball team returns home looking to rebound from its first Big Ten loss of the season when the Huskers take on No. 24 Minnesota in Lincoln on Saturday. Tip-off between the Huskers (11-2, 1-1 Big Ten) and the Golden Gophers (11-2, 1-1 Big Ten) is set for 5 p.m. (CT) at Pinnacle Bank Arena with tickets on sale now at Huskers.com. Tickets can also be purchased at the Pinnacle Bank Arena Box Office beginning 90 minutes before tip-off.

Live television coverage will be provided by the Big Ten Network with Larry Punteney and Brenda VanLengen on the call.

Live radio coverage for Saturday's game can be heard on B107.3 FM in Lincoln and ESPN 590 AM in Omaha beginning at 4:45 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, the Huskers App and TuneIn.

Nebraska opened Big Ten play with a solid 78-69 win over defending Big Ten Tournament champion and NCAA Elite Eight qualifier Iowa on Saturday, Dec. 28, at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln. Junior Kate Cain led the Big Red with her first double-double of the season with 16 points and 12 rebounds. Cain added her second straight double-double with 10 points and a season-high 14 rebounds to go with four blocks in 78-70 overtime loss at Michigan State (Dec. 31).

Cain, a Lisa Leslie Award candidate, is averaging 13.0 points, 13.0 rebounds and 2.5 blocks to open Big Ten play, increasing her season averages to 10.5 points, 7.2 rebounds and 2.9 blocks. Cain moved into second place on Nebraska's career block list (217) at Michigan State.

Despite Cain setting a season high with 14 rebounds, the Huskers were outrebounded 53-35 at Michigan State. NU was minus-16 on the glass in the second half of regulation, allowing the Spartans to rally from a six-point halftime deficit.

Sophomore Sam Haiby led four Huskers in double figures with 19 points at Michigan State, including 15 points on 6-of-6 shooting in the first half. Haiby leads Nebraska's starters in scoring at 11.3 points per game, including a team-best 14.5 points per game in Big Ten play.

Sophomore Leigha Brown added 10 points at Michigan State and is Nebraska's leading scorer on the season with 14.0 points per game. Brown is the highest scoring non-starter in the Big Ten and a leading candidate for Big Ten Sixth Player of the Year.

Senior Nicea Eliely had 14 points at Michigan State and is averaging 13.0 points in Big Ten play.

Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. No. 24 Minnesota Golden Gophers
Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, 5 p.m. (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (15,000) - Lincoln, Neb.
Live TV:
 BTN (Larry Punteney, Brenda VanLengen)
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (4:45 p.m.)
Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)
Lincoln - B107.3 FM; Omaha-ESPN 590 AM; Huskers.com, Huskers App, TuneIn

Nebraska Cornhuskers (11-2, 1-1 Big Ten)
13 - Ashtyn Veerbeek - 6-2 - So. - F - 8.7 ppg, 5.8 rpg
31 - Kate Cain - 6-5 - Jr. - C - 10.5 ppg, 7.2 rpg
3 - Hannah Whitish - 5-9 - Sr. - G - 7.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg
4 - Sam Haiby - 5-9 - So. - G - 11.3 ppg, 2.9 rpg
5 - Nicea Eliely - 6-1 - Sr. - G - 8.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg
Off the Bench
32 - Leigha Brown - 6-1 - So. - F - 14.0 ppg, 3.6 rpg
34 - Isabelle Bourne - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 4.6 ppg, 4.8 rpg
2 - Trinity Brady - 5-11 - Fr. - G - 2.3 ppg, 2.0 rpg
14 - Grace Mitchell - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 2.1 ppg, 1.5 rpg
44 - Kayla Mershon - 6-3 - So. - F - 1.9 ppg, 2.5 rpg
11 - Kristian Hudson - 5-5 - RSr. - G - 1.6 ppg, 1.0 rpg
1 - Makenzie Helms - 5-8 - Fr. - G - 0.4 ppg, 0.6 rpg
Out for Season
33 - Taylor Kissinger - 6-1 - Jr. - G - 8.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
Fourth Season at Nebraska (53-51); 13th Season Overall (246-160)

No. 24 Minnesota Golden Gophers (11-2, 1-1 Big Ten)
5 - Taiye Bello - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 12.8 ppg, 10.4 rpg
3 - Destiny Pitts - 5-10 - Jr. - G/F - 17.1 ppg, 4.8 rpg
14 - Sara Scalia - 5-10 - Fr. - G - 10.9 ppg, 4.2 rpg
21 - Jasmine Brunson - 5-8 - Sr. - G - 8.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg
24 - Gadiva Hubbard - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 11.8 ppg, 3.1 rpg
Off the Bench
4 - Jasmine Powell - 5-6 - Fr. - G - 9.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg
23 - Masha Adashchyk - 5-11 - Jr. - G - 3.6 ppg, 1.4 rpg
20 - Kehinde Bello - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 1.6 ppg, 2.1 rpg
25 - Klarke Sconiers - 6-2 - Fr. - C - 3.7 ppg, 0.7 rpg
2 - Barbora Tomancova - 6-2 - So. - F/C - 0.8 ppg, 1.5 rpg
Head Coach: Lindsay Whalen (Minnesota, 2004)
Second Season at Minnesota (32-13); Second Season Overall (32-13)

Scouting The Minnesota Golden Gophers
• Head coach Lindsay Whalen brings her second Minnesota team to Lincoln ranked in the top 25 for the second straight year. Last season, the No. 23/25 Golden Gophers suffered a 63-57 loss at the hands of the Huskers at Pinnacle Bank Arena (Jan. 20, 2019) in the only meeting between the schools.
• The Gophers come to Lincoln with identical records to Nebraska at 11-2 overall and 1-1 in the Big Ten, after dropping a 66-63 decision to Ohio State at Williams Arena in Minneapolis on New Year's Eve. Minnesota hit just 33.3 percent (13-39) of its two-point field goal attempts in the loss to the Buckeyes.
• Junior guard Destiny Pitts led Minnesota with 26 points on 5-of-10 three-point shooting while adding seven rebounds. Pitts ranks among Big Ten leaders with 17.1 points per game and has hit a blistering 46.7 percent (42-90) of her three-point shots this season. She also leads Minnesota with 3.5 assists per game. She is averaging 23.5 points and 6.0 rebounds through two Big Ten games while going 8-for-15 from three-point range. Pitts was a first-team preseason All-Big Ten choice this year after earning second-team All-Big Ten honors a year ago (16.3 ppg, 5.9 rpg). She was the 2018 Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Pitts managed 10 points but attempted just six shots last season in Lincoln.
• Pitts leads the Big Ten in threes made (42) and free throw percentage (.846).
• Senior Taiye Bello is the focus inside for Minnesota. The athletic 6-2 forward is averaging a double-double with 12.8 points and 10.4 rebounds, including 10.0 points and 12.0 boards in Big Ten play. Bello also ranks among Big Ten leaders with 30 blocks. She was honorable-mention All-Big Ten last year (9.7 ppg, 11.9 rpg). Last season, Bello had seven points and 13 rebounds in Lincoln. 
• Bello leads the Big Ten in double-doubles (7), total rebounds (135), rebounds per game (10.4) and offensive rebounds per game (4.5).
• Junior Gadiva Hubbard returns to the Minnesota lineup this year after missing 2018-19 with an injury. Hubbard is averaging 11.8 points and a team-leading 2.0 steals per contest. The 5-9 guard gives the Gophers another dangerous long-range threat, connecting on 40.6 percent (28-69) of her threes. In 2017-18 in Nebraska's 79-74 win at Minnesota, Hubbard had 15 points and knocked down a trio of threes while adding eight assists. In two Big Ten games this season, Hubbard has been held to 6.0 points and 4.5 rebounds and has hit just 3-of-15 shots, including 2-of-8 threes.
• Freshman Sara Scalia has made major contributions early in her career. The 5-10 guard is averaging 10.9 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.8 steals while shooting 45.1 percent (23-51) from three-point range and 86.7 percent (13-15) from the free throw line. In two Big Ten starts, Scalia is averaging 14.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists while hitting 6-of-9 three-pointers.
• Senior guard Jasmine Brunson rounds out the Minnesota starting five by averaging 8.5 points, 3.0 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.7 steals. Brunson is just 4-of-15 from long range and has not attempted a three in two Big Ten games. She has 12 points in three career games against Nebraska.
• Whalen has kept Minnesota in a tight eight-player rotation in the first two Big Ten games with only freshman Jasmine Powell, senior Kehinde Bello and junior Masha Adashchyk seeing action off the bench. 
• Powell, a 5-6 guard is averaging 9.2 points, 2.5 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.3 steals on the season. She is averaging 5.0 points while going 3-for-13 in two Big Ten games.
• Bello, a 6-2 forward and twin sister of Gopher starter Taiye Bello, has managed 1.6 points and 2.1 rebounds on the year. 
• Adashchyk, a 5-11 guard, has played in nine games on the season and is averaging 3.6 points and 1.4 rebounds. She is 4-for-9 from long range but 0-for-2 to start Big Ten play.
• Minnesota opened Big Ten play with an 81-74 win at Penn State. The Gophers led the Lady Lions 54-21 at the half, before getting outscored 53-27 in the second half. Pitts and Scalia combined for 43 points on 8-of-12 three-point shooting at Penn State.
• For the season, Minnesota is shooting 43.6 percent from the field and 40.2 percent (109-271) from three-point range while averaging 8.4 made threes per game. Minnesota is the Big Ten's best free throw shooting team (.767). The Gophers own a plus-5.6 turnover margin on the season, but are minus-3.0 in turnover margin through two Big Ten games. In two Big Ten games, opponents have hit just 7-of-41 threes (.171) against Minnesota.

Nebraska vs. Minnesota Series History
• Nebraska leads the all-time series with Minnesota 13-9, including a 63-57 Husker win in Lincoln (Jan. 20, 2019) in the lone meeting between the two schools last season. 
• Minnesotan Sam Haiby led Nebraska with 16 points, while Hannah Whitish added 12 points for the Huskers, who outscored the Gophers 25-11 in the fourth quarter last season. Haiby, Whitish and Kissinger combined for all 25 of Nebraska's points in the quarter, as the Huskers overcame a 46-38  deficit at the end of three quarters. 
• Nebraska and Minnesota have met just once in each of the last four seasons, with the Huskers winning the last two meetings including a 79-74 victory in Minneapolis on Dec. 31, 2017. 
• Minnesota's last win was a 79-69 overtime victory on Feb. 4, 2017 at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Taiye Bello and Jasmine Brunson both started for the Gophers in that game, while Hannah Whitish and Nicea Eliely were both starters for the Huskers.
• Nebraska owns an 8-4 edge as Big Ten foes.
• Nebraska is 10-3 all-time against Minnesota in Lincoln.The Huskers are 2-6 against Minnesota in Minneapolis and 1-0 against the Gophers in the Big Ten Tournament (March 7, 2014).
• Although women's basketball was not a full varsity sport at Nebraska until 1975-76, a women's team from Nebraska suffered its first defeat at Minnesota in 1904 after going unbeaten between 1897 and 1903. Two weeks after the first meeting with Minnesota, Nebraska beat the same team in Lincoln.
• Minnesota's Laura Coenen scored 42 points for the Gophers in a 90-79 win over the Huskers on Nov. 30, 1984. That effort is tied for the most points by any opponent in a game against the Huskers.

Nebraska Streaks
 • Kate Cain owns Nebraska's longest streak of consecutive starts (74).
 • Nicea Eliely owns Nebraska's second-longest streak of starts (69).
 • Kate Cain has recorded at least one block in all 13 games this season, and has blocked a shot in 15 straight games dating back to last season.
 • As a team, Nebraska has blocked at least one shot in 82 consecutive games.
 • Kate Cain has produced double-figure points in five consecutive games, the longest active double-digit scoring streak among the Huskers. Cain has produced double figures in seven of the last eight games.
 • Kate Cain has produced a double-double in back-to-back games.
 • Kate Cain, Nicea Eliely and Leigha Brown are the only Huskers to score points in each of Nebraska's first 13 games this season.
 • Kate Cain, Nicea Eliely and Isabelle Bourne are the only Huskers to record at least one rebound for the Huskers in all 13 games this season.
 • 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 47 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, 71 games) that Eliely was shut out.
  • The Huskers have knocked down at least one three in 355 straight games dating back to a loss at UTEP on Dec. 20, 2008. Nebraska has hit at least two three-pointers in 234 consecutive games.

Numbers to Watch 
(3) Nicea Eliely needs three rebounds to reach 400 in her career. When she achieves that milestone she will become just the 12th player in Nebraska history to reach the combined career milestones of 800 points, 400 rebounds and 200 assists.
(3) Kristian Hudson needs three assists to reach 400 in her career (383 at FIU).
(5) Kate Cain needs five rebounds to reach 500 in her career.
(7) Kristian Hudson needs seven rebounds to reach 400 in her career (372 at FIU).
(21) Kate Cain needs 21 points to reach 700 in her career.
(29) Leigha Brown is 29 points away from 500 in her career.
(99) Nicea Eliely is expected to make her team-leading 99th career start on Saturday.

Husker Nuggets
• Nebraska's 11-2 start is its best 13-game start under Coach Amy Williams and NU's best start since also opening 11-2 in in the Big Ten in 2013-14. The Huskers opened 15-1, including 3-0 in the Big Ten during a 16-game conference season in 2011-12.
• Entering games Jan. 2, Nebraska and Minnesota were two of just 29 teams nationally (6 Big Ten) with 11 or more wins. Only nine unbeatens remain among the 344 NCAA Division I  teams.
• Nebraska is No. 50 in the Massey Ratings (Jan. 2). Other Big Ten teams in the top 40 included: Indiana (9), Northwestern (15), Maryland (20), Rutgers (27), Purdue (29), Minnesota (31), Iowa (33), Michigan (39), Ohio State (42) and Michigan State (49).
• Through 13 games, Nebraska is allowing an average of 61.5 points per game (including 59.4 ppg in regulation), after allowing 70.1 points per game last season. NU's 2018 NCAA Tournament team allowed 63.6.
• Opponents are shooting 34.9 percent from the field and 28.6 percent from three-point range against NU. Last year, Husker foes hit 41.1 percent, including 33.4 percent from three. 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 seven opponents to 55 points or less this season. Last year, NU held only two foes (Radford-39, Kansas-52) to 55 or less. NU held 11 opponents to 55 or less in 2017-18.
• NU's bench had outscored opponent reserves in the first 12 games in 2019-20, before being outscored 30-15 at Michigan State. The Husker bench has outscored opposing benches in 40 of the last 43 games overall, including double-digit edges in 30 of the last 43 games.
• This season, NU's bench has outscored opposing benches 355-196 (27.3-15.1 ppg).



BOYS PREP BASKETBALL=

Auburn 57, Milford 34

Battle Creek 62, Twin River 31

Beatrice 57, Kearney Catholic 40

Bishop Neumann 56, Omaha Gross Catholic 28

Crete 47, Waverly 26

Falls City 50, Ashland-Greenwood 44

Hastings St. Cecilia 43, Fillmore Central 33

Wahoo 53, Yutan 50

Wilber-Clatonia 42, Thayer Central 39

GNAC Tournament=

Columbus 62, North Platte 59

Hastings 71, Gering 36

Scottsbluff 69, McCook 44

HAC Tournament=

Fifth Place=

Kearney 41, Grand Island 29

Seventh Place=

Lincoln Northeast 72, Lincoln Southwest 69

Maxwell Tournament=

Championship=

South Loup 63, Brady 50

Consolation=

Maxwell 59, Sandhills Valley 50

Metro Tournament=

Consolation=

Gretna 64, Omaha Benson 39

Omaha Burke 67, Omaha Bryan 64

Semifinal=

Millard North 77, Papillion-LaVista South 66

Omaha Creighton Prep 61, Omaha Central 55

Paxton Holiday Tournament=

Garden County 45, Maywood-Hayes Center 23

Paxton 62, Mullen 28

Ravenna Holiday Tournament=

Consolation=

Centura 74, Overton 29

GIRLS PREP BASKETBALL=

Ashland-Greenwood 52, Falls City 36

Auburn 40, Milford 37

Battle Creek 66, Twin River 32

Crete 47, Waverly 26

Hastings St. Cecilia 63, Fillmore Central 44

Omaha Gross Catholic 51, Bishop Neumann 37

Omaha Skutt Catholic 59, Omaha Duchesne Academy 46

Thayer Central 46, Wilber-Clatonia 19

Wahoo 53, Yutan 50

GNAC Tournament=

Columbus 47, McCook 36

North Platte 47, Hastings 33

Scottsbluff 52, Gering 48

Maxwell Tournament=

Championship=

South Loup 46, Maxwell 32

Consolation=

Brady 35, Sandhills Valley 26

Metro Tournament=

Consolation=

Bellevue West 65, Omaha Bryan 24

Papillion-LaVista South 53, Elkhorn South 44

Semifinal=

Millard South 53, Millard North 43

Omaha Westside 66, Papillion-LaVista 56

Paxton Holiday Tournament=

Maywood-Hayes Center 59, Garden County 20

Mullen 51, Paxton 8

Ravenna Holiday Tournament=

Championship=

Ravenna 44, Overton 31





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GAME 14: NEBRASKA VS. RUTGERS
Date: Friday, Jan. 3
Time: 7:01 p.m. 
Location: Lincoln, Neb.
Arena: Pinnacle Bank Arena
Tickets: Huskers.com/Tickets

NEBRASKA CORNHUSKERS
2019-20 Record: 6-7 (1-1 Big Ten)
Head coach: Fred Hoiberg
    Record at Nebraska: 6-7 (1st year)
    Career NCAA Record: 121-63 (6th year)

RUTGERS SCARLET KNIGHTS
2019-20 Record: 10-3 (1-1 Big Ten)
Head coach: Steve Pikiell
    Record at Rutgers: 54-57 (4th year)
    Career Record: 246-213 (15th year)

BROADCAST INFO
Television: BTN
    Play-by-play: Kevin Kugler  
    Analyst: Shon Morris    
Online Broadcast: Fox Sports App
Radio: Learfield IMG College 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. 
SiriusXM (Internet): Ch.  972        XM: Ch. 382

Huskers Return to B1G Action Against Rutgers

The Nebraska men's basketball team returns to Big Ten action Friday night, as the Huskers welcome the Rutgers Scarlet Knights to Lincoln.  Tipoff at Pinnacle Bank Arena is set for 7 p.m. and a limited number of tickets are available for purchase by visiting Huskers.com/Tickets or at the Pinnacle Bank Arena box office beginning 90 minutes prior to tipoff.
  

 

Friday's matchup will be carried nationally on BTN with Kevin Kugler and Shon Morris on the call. The game can also be streamed via the web, smartphones, tablets and connected devices through the Fox Sports app.

Fans can follow all of the action across the state of Nebraska on the Learfield IMG College 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.

Nebraska (6-7, 1-1 Big Ten) comes off a solid defensive performance in a 73-52 win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Dec. 29. In that game, the Huskers held the Islanders to 32 percent shooting and forced 15 turnovers which led to 24 Husker points. Nebraska used a 22-4 first-half run to take control and put the game away in the second half with an 11-0 spurt after the visitors pulled within 10 points. 

Senior guard Haanif Cheatham paced four Huskers in double figures with 17 points, including 8-of-9 shooting from the foul line, while freshman Yvan Ouedraogo added 11 points and a career-high 14 rebounds for his first career double-double. Cheatham leads the Huskers in scoring at 13.1 points per game while shooting 53 percent from the field. Ouedraogo is pulling down a team-high 6.4 rebounds per game, including 9.5 per game over the Huskers' last four contests. 

Rutgers (10-3, 1-1) comes to Lincoln on a four-game win streak after a 94-49 win over Caldwell on Monday night. The Scarlet Knights shot 52 percent, including 10-of-23 from 3-point range, and put five players in double figures. Jacob Young came off the bench for a game-high 23 points on 9-of-12 shooting and added eight rebounds and six assists. On the season, sophomore Ron Harper Jr. leads a balanced attack at 11.8 points per game, while the Scarlet Knights have six players averaging at least seven points per game.


PLAYER SPOTLIGHT
Senior Matej Kavas has reached double figures in each of his last two games. The 6-foot-8 guard is averaging 11.0 points per game on 57 percent shooting, including 54 percent from 3-point range, in NU's last two contests.

NUMBERS TO KNOW
.459 - Thorir Thorbjarnarson is fifth in the Big Ten in 3-point percentage entering January. He is 17-of-37 from long range this season after going a combined 6-of-28 behind the 3-point stripe in his first two years.

2 - Nebraska has out-rebounded its last two opponents, and if the Huskers can out-rebound Rutgers, it would be the first time since the opening three games of the 2018-19 campaign.

+2.8 - Nebraska enters the new year tied for the Big Ten lead in turnover margin at +2.8 per game. NU has committed 12 or fewer turnovers in each of the last five contests.

3 - Double-figure assist games for Cam Mack, which is the most by a Husker since Brian Carr had five in the 1985-86 season. 

6.4 - Rebounds per game for freshman Yvan Ouedraogo, which is fourth among all Big Ten freshmen. His rebounds per game is on track to be the highest by a Husker freshman since Aleks Maric grabbed 6.3 rebounds per game in 2005-06.

8 - Nebraska has had eight of its nine eligible scholarship players reach double figures this season. The Huskers have three players currently averaging 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.

SCOUTING RUTGERS
Rutgers has made significant strides under fourth-year coach Steve Pikiell. A former player at UConn, Pikiell spent the previous 11 seasons at Stony Brook, leading the program to six postseason appearances in seven years, including an NCAA bid in 2016. Rutgers won 15 games in each of

 

Pikiell's first two years and reached the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Tournament. Last year, the Scarlet Knights tied for 10th with a 7-13 conference mark. This season, Rutgers won six of its first seven games before dropping consecutive road games at Pittsburgh and No. 11 Michigan State. Since then, Rutgers has won four straight games, including a win over Wisconsin and a 20-point victory over No. 22 Seton Hall. 

The Scarlet Knights feature a young lineup with only one senior and three sophomores. Junior guard Geo Baker is a three-year starter and averages 11.5 points while ranking among the Big Ten leaders in assists (4.0, sixth) and steals (1.8, first). Sophomores Ron Harper Jr. (11.8 ppg, 6.1 rpg), Myles Johnson (9.1 ppg, 8.7 rpg) and Montez Mathis (7.3 ppg, 3.3 rpg) all return after playing significant roles last year.

Series History: Friday's matchup will be the 13th all-time meeting with the Scarlet Knights. Nebraska leads the all-time series 8-4 and has won seven of the nine meetings since Rutgers joined the Big Ten. Last year, the two teams split their matchups with Rutgers winning in Piscataway before the Huskers rallied for a 68-61 win in the Big Ten Tournament. NU is 4-0 all-time in Lincoln, including 3-0 at PBA. Prior to the Scarlet Knights joining the Big Ten, the two teams split a home-and-home series in 2006 and 2007, including a 63-51 win at the Devaney Center on Dec. 9, 2006. The only other meeting was a 19-point Rutgers win at the 1999 Hoop and Quill Classic in St. Charles, Mo.

Last Meeting: Behind an opportunistic defense and a big second half from James Palmer Jr., a depleted Nebraska men's basketball team rallied for a 68-61 victory over Rutgers in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament at the United Center in Chicago. Palmer scored 27 second-half points, including five points during a game-changing 15-0 run that turned a five-point Husker deficit with six minutes to play into a 61-51 lead with 1:30 remaining. Palmer finished with 34 points, tying his career high and one-point shy of the Big Ten Tournament scoring record.

LAST TIME OUT
Haanif Cheatham's 17 points led four Huskers in double figures, while Yvan Ouedraogo became the first Husker freshman since 2013 to post a double-double, as Nebraska closed non-conference action with a 73-52 win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Sunday afternoon. 

Cheatham, who went over 1,000 career points on Sunday, helped set the tone early, scoring seven of 11 first-half points in a 22-4 NU run that helped the Huskers take control. 

The Huskers, who improved to 6-7 on the season, held the Islanders to one field goal over a span of nearly 11 minutes in building an early 18-point lead. 

NU, which shot just 33 percent in the first half, took advantage of opportunities when the shots weren't fall, going 13-of-19 in the first half, including 5-of-5 from Cheatham in that stretch. The Huskers also clamped down defensively, holding the Islanders
to 25 percent shooting, including 3-of-14 from 3-point range in the opening 20 minutes. 

In addition to Cheatham, Ouedraogo finished with career bests in both points (11) and rebounds (14) to become the first Husker freshman since Shavon Shields in 2013 to record a double-double, while Cam Mack and Matej Kavas added 10 points apiece for the winners. 

DID YOU KNOW
• The matchup with Rutgers features three of the Big Ten's top four steals leaders in Rutgers' Geo Baker (first, 1.8 spg) and Nebraska's Cam Mack (1.5, third) and Orange, N.J. product Dachon Burke Jr. (1.5, third). 

• Friday's game against Rutgers begins a stretch where Nebraska will play 15 of its final 18 regular-season games against teams in the top 55 of the NET. In all, 12 of the 14 Big Ten teams are ranked in the top 55 of the NET and in the Kenpom rankings.

• Yvan Ouedraogo's 14 rebounds vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Dec. 29 were the most by a Husker freshman since 2004 (15, Aleks Maric vs. UAB) and tied for the third-highest total in the last 20 years. Ouedraogo is the third Husker to have a double-double this season.

• The Huskers have already played three overtime games in the first 12 games of 2018-19, posting a 1-2 record. NU's single-season record is four, set five times, most recently in 2007-08. As of Jan. 1, Nebraska has played in three of the Big Ten's seven overtime games, while the Huskers' three overtime games is third nationally and leads all power conference teams. 

• Despite the longer 3-point line this season, Nebraska's two returnees are shooting significantly better from beyond the arc than at any point of their career. Both players are averaging more than a 3-pointer per game, which are the highest rates of their career.

Returnees Making Strides

Player

Career 3-Pct. Entering 2019-20

3/GM

19-20 3Pt Pct.

3/GM

Burke

.333

0.89

.352

1.46

Thorbjarnarson

.214

0.17

.459

1.30


• 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. Over the last 10 games dating back to Nov. 22, NU is shooting 37 percent from 3-point range and averaging 9.1 3-pointers per game after shooting just 23 percent in the first three games of the season. 

Huskers' 3-Point Improvement

Category

Before Nov. 22

Since Nov. 22

Games

3

10

3 Pt. Pct.

.231

.373

3-Pointers/Gm

6.0

9.1

Att./Gm

26.0

24.4


• With three players averaging double figures, Nebraska has relied on its balance. In its first 13 games, NU has put at least four players in double figures 10 times. The Huskers put five players in double figures against Washington State on Nov. 25 and at Creighton on Dec. 7. 

• It is not surprising that Nebraska has relied on its 3-point shooting, as Hoiberg's Iowa State teams led the Big 12 in 3-pointers in four of his five seasons at the school. The Huskers are on pace to average 8.4 3-pointers per game, a total which would rank second in school history and be the most since the 2001-02 campaign. 

Most 3-Pointers/Game in School History

No.

School

Games

3-Pointers/Game

1.

2001-02

28

9.54

-

2019-20

13

8.40

2.

2006-07

31

7.87

3.

2018-19

36

7.50


• Cam Mack's triple-double against Purdue on Dec. 15 was the first by a Husker in school history and the only one by a Big Ten player this season. As of Jan. 1, only 12 players have had a triple-double this season.

•- Cam Mack is the only Husker in the last 30 years to have multiple points-assist double-doubles in the same season as he had one against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 and at Indiana on Dec. 13 in addition to his triple double against Purdue.  In fact, it is only the seventh time in the last 30 years that a Husker has had a points-assists double-double. His consecutive points-assists double-double was the first since Brian Carr in December of 1985 (vs. UC-Irvine and Creighton). 

Husker Points/Assists Double-Doubles (Last 30 years)

No.

Pts.

Asst.

Opponent

Cam Mack

11

12

vs. Purdue, 12/13/19

Cam Mack

15

10

at Indiana, 12/13/19

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


• Nebraska enters Friday's game tied for first in the Big Ten in turnover margin at +2.8 per game. The Huskers have forced an average of 14.8 turnovers per game to rank third in the Big Ten while averaging 12.0 turnovers per game to rank fifth. During his tenure at Iowa State, Hoiberg's teams ranked in the top three in the Big 12 in fewest turnovers per game in four of his five seasons at the school. 

• Nebraska has 12 double-figure scoring runs this season, including a pair of double-figure runs against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

• 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 according to noted statistician Ken Pomeroy.

Fewest Returning PPG from 2018-19

No.

School

Returning PPG

Pct. of Scoring

1

Nebraska

2.0 PPG

1.9%

2.

Tulane

10.8 PPG

12.2%

3.

South Dakota St.

15.8 PPG

16.9%

4.

Virginia Tech

13.3 PPG

18.1%

5.

Washington

13.9 PPG

19.8%

Courtesy: Virginia Tech SID office

THE CHASE FOR 1,000
Despite having only 50 points returning from last season, a third Husker this season is closing on 1,000 career points.

Junior guard Dachon Burke Jr. comes into Friday's game with 978 points and needs 22 points to reach that plateau. Burke's season high is 25 points at Indiana on Dec. 13. On the year, he is averaging 12.7, while shooting 41 percent from the floor, including 35 percent from 3-point range. 

Haanif Cheatham went over 1,000 career points against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Dec. 29, while Matej Kavas reached that plateau against Southern on Nov. 22. 

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 14th nationally in offensive tempo, as their average possession is 15.1 seconds per possession entering 2020.

• In his five seasons as a college coach, Hoiberg's teams have ranked in the top 20 in offensive tempo four times, including top-10 rankings in both 2014 and 2015. 

• Hoiberg's first Iowa State team in 2010-11 jumped from 67th to 20th nationally in offensive pace and ranked in the top 40 nationally in adjusted 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 adjusted tempo - the 1999-2000 Huskers under Danny Nee. The Huskers' quickest offensive tempo in the last decade was in 2017-18 when the Huskers were 140th in offensive tempo.

JUCO STANDOUTS MACK AND GREEN STEP INTO LINEUP
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 Rutgers contest averaging 12.8 points per game while leading the Huskers in assists (6.5), steals (1.5) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.2-to-1). 

• He ranks 13th nationally in assists per game and is the highest Division I newcomer in the NCAA rankings. In fact, only two newcomers nationally average over 6.0 assists per game.

• Mack is the only player in the Big Ten ranked in the top five in both assists (third) and steals (third). Only four Big Ten players - Mack, Geo Baker (Rutgers), CJ Walker (Ohio State) and Anthony Cowan (Maryland) rank in the top-10 in both categories as
of Jan. 1.

• His 6.5 assists per game is on pace to rank third in school history, trailing only Brian Carr, who averaged 7.9 assists per game in 1984-85 and 6.7 assists per game in 1985-86.

• He recorded the first triple-double in program history against Purdue on Dec. 15 with 11 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists, setting season bests in both rebounds and assists in NU's 70-54 win. 

• Mack is one of only five players nationally - and two in the Big Ten - to have at least three points-assists double-doubles this season. He also had 13 points and 11 assists against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 and 15 points and 10 assists at Indiana on Dec. 13.

• He's reached double figures 11 times, including a season-high 24-point performance against South Dakota State on Nov. 15. 

• 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 9.5 points along with 4.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game. He ranks i_n the top four on the squad in rebounding, assists, steals (1.1 spg) and blocks (0.5 bpg). Green has come off the bench the last two games after missing two games for a violation of team rules. 

• He has been in double figures five times, including a season-high 22 points in an overtime win over Southern on Nov. 22. His two 3-pointers helped key a 10-0 spurt in overtime to seal the win. 

• Green nearly posted a double-double against Washington State on Nov. 25 with 16 points and eight rebounds in 27 minutes.

• He nearly had a double-double against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 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 in 2019, 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 coming to Nebraska for his final year. Cheatham has played some of the best basketball of his career over the last month. Over Nebraska's last nine games, he's averaging 15.9 points and 4.3 rebounds per game, while typically guarding the opponent's top scoring threat. 

• Cheatham has reached double figures in eight of the Huskers' last nine games, including a 21-point, six-rebound performance at Indiana on Dec. 13. He had six straight double-figure efforts from Nov. 25-Dec. 13, the second-longest streak of his collegiate career. 

• He went over 1,000 career points with a 17-point performance against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Dec. 29.

• Cheatham posted his first career double-double with 14 points and a career-high 11 rebounds at Georgia Tech on Dec. 4.

• 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 to garner all-tournament honors.

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 12.7 points and 4.0 rebounds per game. Burke has reached double figures eight times, including a 25-point effort against Indiana on Dec. 13 and a 21-point performance against South Florida on Nov. 27. Burke leads the Huskers in 3-pointers (19) and is shooting over 35 percent from 3-point range.
 
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 and has been a mainstay of the Husker lineup. 

• He is one of the youngest players in the country, as he won't turn 18 until after the 2020 Big Ten Tournament. 

• Ouedraogo has started all 13 games for the Huskers, averaging 6.2 points and a team-high 6.4 rebounds per game in just over 21 minutes per game.

• He is on track to be the third freshman to lead NU in rebounding in a season, joining Aleks Maric (2005-06) and John Turek (2001-02). 

• Ouedraogo has played some of his best basketball recently, averaging 8.8 points and 9.5 rebounds per game over the Huskers' last four contests dating back to Dec. 13.

• He picked up his first career double-double against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Dec. 29 with 11 points and 14 rebounds. His double-double was the first by a Husker freshman since Shavon Shields in 2013 and Ouedraogo became just the 10th freshman to record a double-double. 

• His 10 rebounds against Indiana marked the second-highest rebounding total for a Husker freshman in his first conference game, trailing only Dave Hoppen in 1983.

• 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.

• 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 played for the French U-18 squad at the 2019 European Championships in July, as France went 6-1 and finished fifth in the competition.

CROSS LIFTS BENCH PRODUCTION 
Freshman Kevin Cross has been a key contributor for the Huskers. The 6-foot-8 freshman from Little Rock, Ark., has been the first Husker off the bench in all 13 games and is averaging 6.8 points and 4.3 rebounds per game. 

• Cross is seventh among Big Ten true freshmen in scoring and fourth in rebounding as of Jan. 1.

• He has become more efficient rebounding, averaging 6.3 rebounds per game over the Huskers' last four contests. He has grabbed five-or-more rebounds eight times this season.

• Cross has been in double figures four times off the bench, including a season-high 19 points against Southern Utah. He became the first freshman in 73 games to pace the Huskers in scoring, while his 19-point effort was the highest by a Husker rookie since Shavon Shields in 2013.

• 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.

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 shot 40 percent or better in all three of his seasons at Seattle. Kavas' .433 career percentage ranks 12th among active Division I players. 

• 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 had his best performance of the year against North Dakota on Dec. 21, hitting 4-of-5 3-pointers. It was the 18th time in his career he had 4-or-more 3-pointers in a game. 

• As a sophomore at Seattle, Kavas led the WAC in both 3-point percentage (.464) and 3-pointers per game (2.8). 

• Kavas' 186 career 3-pointers would ranks third 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).





East Lansing, Mich. - Sam Haiby led four Huskers in double figures with 19 points, but the Nebraska women's basketball team suffered a 78-70 overtime loss at Michigan State on Saturday at the Breslin Center.

Nebraska took its first road loss of the season to slip to 11-2 overall and 1-1 in the Big Ten, while the Spartans improved to 6-0 at home on the year to move to 8-5 and 1-1 in the league. Sophomore Nia Clouden led five Spartans in double figures with 16 points and seven assists, while senior point guard Taryn McCutcheon scored all 15 of her points in the game after halftime to help Michigan State rally from a 10-point second-half deficit to victory.

Rebounding was the key stat in the second half and the game, as the Spartans were plus-15 on the boards after halftime, winning the battle 53-35 for the game. In the first half, Michigan State held a 20-17 edge on the boards but trailed 29-23 on the scoreboard.

The Huskers quickly pushed the lead to 10 points on their first two possessions of the second half, taking a 33-23 lead with 9:18 left in the third quarter, but McCutcheon's three-pointer with 1:41 left in the third cut the NU lead to 41-40. Nebraska shut out the Spartans the rest of the quarter and maintained its six-point advantage at the end of the period (46-40).

Husker senior Hannah Whitish capped an 8-0 run with Nebraska's only three-pointer of the second half to give Nebraska a 49-40 lead with 9:17 left in regulation. A layup by Nicea Eliely, who finished with 14 points, kept NU's margin at nine (51-42), before the Spartans erupted on a 10-0 run over the next 3:24 to take a 52-51 lead with 5:06 left on a Kayla Belles three-point play. Belles finished with 11 points and eight rebounds for the Spartans.

The two teams were in a dogfight for the rest of regulation, as the Huskers regained a 53-52 lead on an Ashtyn Veerbeek short-corner jumper with 3:53 left. Kate Cain, who notched her second straight double-double and 10th of her career with 10 points and 14 rebounds, scored to give Nebraska 55-53 lead with 3:03 left, before another Eliely layup put the Big Red up 57-54 with 1:26 left. Cain added four blocks in the game to move into sole possession of second place on NU's career block list with 217.

However, Nia Clouden's three-pointer with 57 seconds left tied the game at 57.

Haiby hit a free throw with 37.1 left to put Nebraska back up by one, before Brown added a free throw with 15.7 left to give Nebraska a 59-57 lead. Brown finished with 10 points, three rebounds and three assists. Both teams missed four free throws in the fourth quarter.

The Huskers played solid defense and the Spartans were in a scramble on the floor before the ball rolled out of bounds off NU with 3.8 seconds. On the ensuing sideline out-of-bounds throw-in, NU's Isabelle Bourne deflected the pass and dove after the ball in the corner with MSU's Tory Ozment. Bourne was called for a loose-ball foul with 2.2 seconds left, sending the 90 percent free throw shooter Ozment to the line. Ozment tied the game by hitting both free throws to send it to overtime. Ozment finished with 11 points.

Michigan State won the tip in overtime and scored on a Belles layup 20 seconds into the extra period and Nebraska was never able to recover. A free throw by Haiby cut the margin to 61-60 but the third three-pointer of the game by Moira Joiner, who finished with 13 points and six rebounds, gave the Spartans a four-point lead before they took their biggest lead of the game to that point on a shot by McCutcheon to make it 66-60.  Clouden's second three of the game followed by a pair of McCutcheon free throws put MSU up nine (73-64) with 35 seconds left.

For the game, Nebraska hit 42.6 percent (26-61) of its shots from the field but just 2-for-17 threes (.118). The Huskers also hit just 61.5 percent (16-26) of their free throws. Nebraska did win the turnover battle 19-18 and outscored MSU 20-11 in points off turnovers in the game.

Michigan State hit just 37.5 percent (27-72) of its shots, but hit 7-of-20 threes (.350) including 6-of-15 in the second half. The Spartans also hit 17-of-25 free throws, including 6-of-7 in OT. MSU outscored Nebraska 22-9 in second-chance points.

Nebraska used a big 10-0 run midway through the first quarter to take control after trailing the Spartans 8-4 early. Haiby and freshman Trinity Brady were the keys to the Big Red burst, with Brady getting two points, two steals and a big defensive rebound while Haiby added a steal and back-to-back three-point plays.

Haiby finished with eight in the first quarter to shoot Nebraska to a 20-12 lead, before adding seven in the second period to send the Huskers to the halftime locker room with a 29-23 edge. Haiby finished with 15 points in the half and went 6-for-6 from the field including NU's only three-pointer, while hitting both her free throws. She added three assists, three steals and a rebound in the half.

Cain helped the Huskers with six points and seven rebounds in the half, as Nebraska hit 42.9 percent (12-28) of its shots, but just 1-of-8 threes. The Huskers went 4-for-4 at the line and won the turnover battle 10-9 in the half. Nebraska turned MSU's 10 turnovers into 14 points, while Spartans converted NU's turnovers to just four points in the first half. Michigan State won the first-half battle of the boards 20-17.

The Spartans, who were playing without injured fifth-year senior starters Shay Colley and Victoria Gaines, hit just 35.5 percent (11-31) of their shots from the floor, including 1-of-5 threes. Five Spartans finished with four or more points, led by five points from freshman Moira Joiner on 2-of-7 shooting.

Nebraska returns home Saturday to play host to No. 24 Minnesota. Tip-off between the Huskers and the Golden Gophers on Saturday at Pinnacle Bank Arena is set for 5 p.m., with tickets available now at Huskers.com. The game will be televised live by BTN with a radio broadcast by the Learfield IMG College Husker Sports Network.



-
The Nebraska women's basketball team embarks on its first Big Ten Conference road trip of the season while closing the 2019 calendar year against Michigan State in East Lansing on Tuesday afternoon.

Tip-off between the Huskers (11-1, 1-0 Big Ten) and Spartans (7-5, 0-1 Big Ten) is set for noon (CT) at the Breslin Center. Live television coverage will be provided by the Big Ten Network with Chris Vosters and Vera Jones on the call.

Live radio coverage for Tuesday's New Year's Eve date at Michigan State can be heard on B107.3 FM in Lincoln and ESPN 590 AM in Omaha beginning at 11:45 a.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, the Huskers App and TuneIn.

Nebraska opened Big Ten play with a solid 78-69 win over defending Big Ten Tournament champion and NCAA Elite Eight qualifier Iowa on Saturday at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln.

Junior Kate Cain led the Huskers by recording her first double-double of the season and eighth of her career with 16 points and a season-high 12 rebounds. The 6-5 center from Middletown, N.Y., is a Lisa Leslie Award candidate this year and is averaging 10.6 points and team bests of 6.7 rebounds and 2.8 blocks.

Nebraska sophomore Leigha Brown leads Nebraska and ranks 12th in the Big Ten in scoring (14.3 ppg). She closed non-conference play with a season-high 25 points against Manhattan (Dec. 22) to earn a spot on the Big Ten Weekly Honor Roll (Dec. 23). Brown opened Big Ten play with 10 points and six rebounds and is a top contender for Big Ten Sixth Player of the Year honors. She is the only non-starter in the Big Ten averaging more than 12 points per game. 

Fellow sophomore Sam Haiby earned spots on the Big Ten Weekly Honor Roll (Nov. 11, Dec. 16) after big performances in Husker wins. Haiby, who had 10 points in the win over Iowa (Dec. 28), scored a career-high 28 points in a win over Missouri (Nov. 10) and added 20 points in a win over Oral Roberts (Dec. 14). She ranks second among the Huskers with 10.7 points per game.

Senior leaders Nicea Eliely (12 points, 5 assists) and Hannah Whitish (11 points, 3 assists) completed a group of five Huskers who scored in double figures against Iowa. Whitish is a two-time All-Big Ten pick who is the only Husker in history to reach the combined career milestones of 1,000 points (1,061), 400 assists (412) and 200 made three-pointers (217).

Nebraska Cornhuskers (11-1, 1-0 Big Ten)
at Michigan State Spartans (7-5, 0-1 Big Ten)
Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019, Noon (CT)
Breslin Center (14,759) - East Lansing, Mich.
Live TV:
 BTN (Chris Vosters, Vera Jones)
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (11:45 a.m.)
Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)
Lincoln - B107.3 FM; Omaha-ESPN 590 AM; Huskers.com, Huskers App, TuneIn

Nebraska Cornhuskers (11-1, 1-0 Big Ten)
13 - Ashtyn Veerbeek - 6-2 - So. - F - 8.9 ppg, 6.0 rpg
31 - Kate Cain - 6-5 - Jr. - C - 10.6 ppg, 6.7 rpg
3 - Hannah Whitish - 5-9 - Sr. - G - 7.9 ppg, 3.5 rpg
4 - Sam Haiby - 5-9 - So. - G - 10.7 ppg, 2.8 rpg
5 - Nicea Eliely - 6-1 - Sr. - G - 8.5 ppg, 4.8 rpg
Off the Bench
32 - Leigha Brown - 6-1 - So. - F - 14.3 ppg, 3.7 rpg
34 - Isabelle Bourne - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 5.0 ppg, 4.9 rpg
14 - Grace Mitchell - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 2.3 ppg, 1.6 rpg
44 - Kayla Mershon - 6-3 - So. - F - 1.8 ppg, 2.6 rpg
2 - Trinity Brady - 5-11 - Fr. - G - 2.5 ppg, 2.0 rpg
11 - Kristian Hudson - 5-5 - RSr. - G - 1.6 ppg, 1.0 rpg
1 - Makenzie Helms - 5-8 - Fr. - G - 0.4 ppg, 0.6 rpg
Out for Season
33 - Taylor Kissinger - 6-1 - Jr. - G - 8.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
Fourth Season at Nebraska (53-50); 13th Season Overall (246-159)

Michigan State Spartans (7-5, 0-1 Big Ten)
12 - Nia Hollie - 6-0 - Sr. - F - 3.2 ppg, 2.5 rpg
15 - Victoria Gaines - 6-3 - RSr. - F - 4.2 ppg, 3.7 rpg
0 - Shay Colley - 5-9 - RSr. - G - 9.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg
4 - Taryn McCutcheon - 5-5 - Sr. - G - 11.2 ppg, 4.2 rpg
24 - Nia Clouden - 5-8 - So. - G - 15.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg
Off the Bench
40 - Julia Ayrault - 6-2 - Fr. - G - 6.1 ppg, 4.9 rpg
1 - Tory Ozment - 6-1 - So. - G/F - 5.2 ppg, 2.8 rpg
2 - Mardrekia Cook - 6-0 - Jr. - F - 5.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg
42 - Kayla Belles - 6-3 - So. - F - 4.7 ppg, 3.0 rpg
3 - Alyza Winston - 5-7 - Fr. - G - 4.2 ppg, 1.3 rpg
22 - Moira Joiner - 5-10 - Fr. - G - 4.2 ppg, 3.0 rpg
14 - Taiyier Parks - 6-3 - Fr. - F - 4.1 ppg, 4.0 rpg
Head Coach: Suzy Merchant (Central Michigan, 1991)
13th Season at Michigan State (272-139); 25th Season Overall (473-259)

Scouting the Michigan State Spartans
• In her 13th season at Michigan State, Coach Suzy Merchant had her Spartans in the top 25 throughout the non-conference season until losing back-to-back games to Syracuse (77-63) and West Virginia (63-57) at the Sunshine Challenge before the holiday break. The Spartans suffered their third straight setback with a 79-67 loss at No. 14 Indiana on Saturday.
• MSU's only other losses this season came against LSU at the Junkanoo Jam and unbeaten Florida State in Tallahassee to open a December schedule that so far has seen the Spartans go 1-4 with its only win against Morehead State at home amidst four losses away from the Breslin Center.
• Michigan State is 5-0 at home this season with no games against a Power Five conference foe and an average winning margin of 40.6 points per game. Those five opponents combined to go 15-44 through games Dec. 29. The Spartans are just 2-5 away from East Lansing with all seven contests against Power Five teams and a minus-7.6 scoring margin.
• Michigan State's most explosive and consistent player is sophomore Nia Clouden. The 5-8 guard ranks sixth in the Big Ten in scoring at 15.7 points per game. She also ranks third in the Big Ten with 2.5 steals per game. Clouden, who was a two-time Gatorade High School Player of the Year in Maryland, was one of five newcomers on the Big Ten All-Freshman Team in 2018-19. Clouden has started each of the first 45 games to open her career. 
• The only other Spartan to start all 12 games this season and each of the last 45 over the past year-and-a-half is senior Taryn McCutcheon. The 5-5 point guard is the motor that makes the Spartans go and has been for 110 starts in 110 games in her career. McCutcheon is averaging more than 30 minutes per game and played nearly 35 minutes at Indiana. She is averaging 11.2 points, 4.2 rebounds and nearly three assists per game. McCutcheon had 15 points at Indiana to reach the 1,000-point scoring mark in her career. She has added more than 500 assists and 300 rebounds in her career.
• McCutcheon is the catalyst for one of the oldest starting fives in the Big Ten, which includes fifth-year senior starters Shay Colley and Victoria Gaines. 
• Colley, who was a first-team All-Big Ten choice last year and a preseason All-Big Ten selection entering this season, is averaging 9.7 points and 4.2 rebounds despite battling injury early this season. Colley was a transfer from South Carolina/Pittsburgh prior to the 2016-17 season and has helped MSU play up-tempo basketball and pressure defense when she is healthy and at her best. She had eight points and four rebounds in 18 minutes off the bench in the loss at Indiana. She also battled foul trouble against the Hoosiers. Colley has played just six games with four starts so far this year.
• Gaines, a 6-3 forward, is averaging 4.2 points and 3.7 rebounds with nine starts in 10 games. Gaines had 12 points on 6-of-9 shooting in the loss at Indiana. Gaines owns 61 career starts in 117 career games. In four career games against Nebraska Gaines has averaged 8.3 points and 4.3 rebounds.
• A fourth senior, Nia Hollie, made her first start of the season and 16th of her career at Indiana. The 6-0 forward is averaging 3.2 points and 2.5 rebounds.
• While the Spartans are experienced, they have not been settled on a starting five because of several factors including injuries. Junior forward Mardrekia Cook (5.2 ppg, 2.6 rpg) has made five starts but did not play at Indiana.
• Tory Ozment, a 6-1 sophomore, has made six starts and is averaging 5.2 points and 2.8 rebounds. Ozment also ranks third among the Spartans with 13 three-pointers.
• Fellow sophomore Kayla Belles, a 6-3 forward, has added three starts and is averaging 4.7 points and 3.0 boards.
• Freshman Moira Joiner has made eight starts in her first season. The 5-10 guard has managed 4.2 points and 3.0 rebounds.
• Fellow freshmen Alyza Winston (4.2 ppg, 1.3 rpg) and Taiyier Parks (4.1 ppg, 4.0 rpg) have joined Joiner in playing all 12 games. Winston and Parks have both averaged double-digit minutes but neither scored in the Big Ten opener at Indiana.
• As a team, Michigan State is averaging 74.3 while allowing 60.3 points per game (nearly identical to Nebraska's 74.5-60.2). However, the Spartans are shooting just 40.8 percent from the field and 31.1 percent from three-point range. MSU is also shooting just 63.2 percent at the free throw line. MSU owns a plus-4.5 rebound margin and a plus-5.0 turnover margin.
• Against Power Five teams, MSU has a minus-4.9 rebound margin and plus-3.0 turnover margin.
• At home against non-Power Five teams, the Spartans are shooting 48.3 percent from the field and 35.2 percent from three-point range but just 61.4 percent at the line. Away from home against Power Five teams, MSU has hit just 35.6 percent of its shots, including just 28.2 percent of its threes. The Spartans have hit 64.2 percent of their free throws away from home.

Nebraska vs. Michigan State Series History
• Nebraska leads the all-time series with Michigan State 8-3 with all 11 meetings as Big Ten Conference foes, including a 79-69 win over the Spartans in East Lansing on Feb. 14, 2018. The Huskers are 2-3 against Michigan State all-time at the Breslin Center.
• The Huskers are 5-0 against the Spartans in Lincoln, including an 82-71 win over then-No. 24 Michigan State at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln on Feb. 17, 2019.  
• Four of Nebraska's eight wins have been by 10 or more points, while NU's most lopsided win in the series came with an 86-58 victory over the Spartans in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals on March 8, 2014 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
• Michigan State's three series wins have all been by double digits in East Lansing, including a 73-53 victory in the first-ever meeting on Feb. 23, 2012. Two years later, the Spartans worked their way to a 70-57 win on Jan. 9, 2014, before rolling to a 93-73 victory over the Huskers on Jan. 7, 2017.
• In four career games against Michigan State, Hannah Whitish has averaged 17.8 points, 4.0 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.8 steals.
• In two games against NU, Shay Colley has averaged 16.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists.

Nebraska Streaks
• Kate Cain owns Nebraska's longest streak of consecutive starts (73).
• Nicea Eliely owns Nebraska's second-longest streak of starts (68).
• Kate Cain has recorded at least one block in all 12 games this season, and has blocked a shot in 14 straight games dating back to last season.
• As a team, Nebraska has blocked at least one shot in 81 consecutive games.
• Kate Cain has produced double-figure points in four consecutive games, the longest active double-digit scoring streak among the Huskers. Cain has produced double figures in six of the last seven games.
• Kate CainNicea ElielyLeigha Brown and Isabelle Bourne are the only Huskers to score points in each of Nebraska's first 12 games this season.
• Kate CainNicea Eliely and Isabelle Bourne are the only Huskers to record at least one rebound for the Huskers in all 12 games this season.
• 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 46 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, 71 games) that Eliely was shut out.
 • The Huskers have knocked down at least one three in 354 straight games dating back to a loss at UTEP on Dec. 20, 2008. Nebraska has hit at least two three-pointers in 233 consecutive games.

Numbers to Watch 
(3) Kate Cain needs three blocks to match Catheryn Redmon (216, 2008-11) at No. 2 on Nebraska's career blocked shot list. Cain would also match Casey Leonhardt (37, 1999-00) at No. 4 on the Husker junior single-season block list.
(3) Kristian Hudson needs three assists to reach 400 in her career (383 at FIU).
(5) Nicea Eliely needs five rebounds to reach 400 in her career. When she achieves that milestone she will become just the 12th player in Nebraska history to reach the combined career milestones of 800 points, 400 rebounds and 200 assists.
(7) Kristian Hudson needs seven rebounds to reach 400 in her career (372 at FIU).
(19) Kate Cain needs 19 rebounds to reach 500 in her career.
(98) Nicea Eliely is expected to make her team-leading 98th career start on Tuesday.

Husker Nuggets
• Nebraska's 11-1 start is its best under Coach Amy Williams and NU's best start since also opening 11-1 in its first season in the Big Ten in 2011-12. The Huskers opened 15-1, including 3-0 in the Big Ten during a 16-game conference season in 2011-12.
• Entering the week, Nebraska was one of 27 teams nationally (5 Big Ten) with 11 or more wins. The Huskers were one of 30 teams with one loss or less (4 Big Ten). Only nine unbeatens remain among the 344 NCAA Division I  teams.
• Nebraska is No. 34 in the Massey Ratings (Dec. 30). Other Big Ten teams in the top 40 included: Indiana (11), Maryland (15), Northwestern (20), Minnesota (22), Rutgers (24), Purdue (31), Iowa (33), Nebraska (34) and Michigan (39).
• Through 12 games, Nebraska is allowing an average of 60.2 points per game, after allowing 70.1 points per game last season. NU's 2018 NCAA Tournament team allowed 63.6.
• Opponents are shooting 34.6 percent from the field and 28.1 percent from three-point range against NU. Last year, Husker foes hit 41.1 percent, including 33.4 percent from three. 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 seven opponents to 55 points or less this season. Last year, NU held only two foes (Radford-39, Kansas-52) to 55 or less. NU held 11 opponents to 55 or less in 2017-18.
• NU's bench has outscored opponent reserves in all 12 games in 2019-20, and 40 of the last 42 games overall. The Husker bench has outscored opponent benches by double digits in 30 of the last 42 games.
• This season, NU's bench has outscored opposing benches 340-166 (28.3-13.8 ppg).



-
Lincoln, Neb. – Haanif Cheatham's 17 points led four Huskers in double figures, while Yvan Ouedraogo became the first Husker freshman since 2013 to post a double-double, as Nebraska closed non-conference action with a 73-52 win over Texas A&M Corpus Christi Sunday afternoon.

Cheatham, who went over 1,000 career points on Sunday, helped set the tone early, scoring seven of 11 first-half points in a 22-4 NU run that helped the Huskers take control.

The Huskers, who improved to 6-7 on the season, held the Islanders to one field goal over a span of nearly 11 minutes in building an early 18-point.
NU, which shot just 33 percent in the first half, took advantage of opportunities when the shots weren't fall, going 13-of-19 in the first half, including 5-of-5 from Cheatham in that stretch. The Huskers also
clamped down defensively, holding the Islanders to 25 percent shooting, including 3-of-14 from 3-point range in the opening 20 minutes.

In addition to Cheatham, Ouedraogo finished with career bests in both points (11) and rebounds (14) to become the first Husker freshman since Shavon Shields in 2013 to record a double-double, while Cam Mack and Matej Kavas added 10 points apiece for the winners.

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi chipped away early in the second half, pulling to within 10 points in the opening minutes of the second half and pull to within 49-37 after a pair of Jordan Hairston baskets with 8:55 left before the Huskers put the game away.

The Huskers used an 11-0 run over the next 1:50, to stretch the lead back to 23 after a Kavas 3-pointer. Ouedraogo and Jervay Green had four point each in the surge, and NU would be in control the rest of the way.

Nebraska returns to action this Friday, Jan. 3, as the Huskers return to Big Ten action by hosting Rutgers at 7 p.m. A limited number of Holiday break tickets are available for Friday's game by visiting Huskers.com/Tickets.



-
Lincoln - Kate Cain produced her first double-double of the season with 16 points and a season-high 12 rebounds to lead five Huskers in double figures, as Nebraska battled to a 78-69 women's basketball win over Iowa at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Saturday afternoon. 

Cain, a junior center from Middletown, N.Y., hit 6-of-11 shots from the field and helped the Huskers seal the win in their Big Ten Conference opener by hitting four straight free throws in the fourth quarter as Nebraska improved to 11-1 on the season. Iowa slipped to 9-3 on the season and 0-1 in the Big Ten.

Senior Nicea Eliely added a strong game with 12 points, four rebounds and a game-high five assists without a turnover to help the Huskers. Fellow senior Hannah Whitish contributed 11 points, three rebounds and three assists without a turnover, as Nebraska won the turnover battle 18-13 while outscoring the Hawkeyes 24-9 off those turnovers.

Sophomores Sam Haiby and Leigha Brown each pitched in 10 points for the Big Red, while freshman Isabelle Bourne added a huge lift off the bench with career highs of eight points and seven assists. All of Bourne's eight points came in a 1:20 span late in the second quarter for the Huskers, as she helped Nebraska take its biggest lead of the first half at 35-27. Bourne's eight points capped a stretch of 14 consecutive points by the NU bench, which started with a three by senior point guard Kristian Hudson to give Nebraska a 27-25 lead, before the first three-pointer of freshman Trinity Brady's career pushed Nebraska's edge to 30-27 with 4:33 left. 

Nebraska maintained a lead the rest of the way. Iowa narrowed the margin to 38-34 at halftime, before trimming it to 42-41 after a three-pointer from Kathleen Doyle with 7:20 left in the third quarter. Iowa's senior point guard finished with a game-high 19 points, including 17 in the second half, but went just 4-for-15 from the field.

The Huskers pushed the lead to 57-52 at the end of three quarters and Iowa never got closer, as the Huskers built a 10-point lead on two occasions in the final period. 

Monika Czinano added a double-double for Iowa with 16 points and a career-high 17 rebounds, while McKenna Warnock pitched in a career-high 14 points and six rebounds off the bench for the Hawkeyes.

Nebraska's defense was stellar throughout, holding the nation's No. 11 field goal percentage team to just 36.8 percent (21-57) shooting from the field. The Hawkeyes hit just 6-of-20 threes despite Warnock going a career-best 3-for-3 in the contest off the bench for Iowa. The Hawkeyes hit just 3-of-15 field goals in the fourth period, with all three coming from Czinano, but hung around by hitting 11 free throws in the fourth quarter.

The Huskers hit 43.5 percent (27-62) of their field goals, including 7-of-19 threes (.368), while knocking down 17-of-24 free throws (.708), including 11-for-16 in the fourth quarter.

Nebraska improved to 15-14 all-time in the series with Iowa and the two teams will meet again at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Feb. 6.

Nebraska makes its first Big Ten Conference road trip on New Year's Eve by traveling to East Lansing to take on Michigan State. The Huskers and Spartans are scheduled to tip-off at noon (CT) and the game will be televised by the Big Ten Network and on radio by the Leafield IMG College Husker Sports Network.



-

GAME 13: Nebraska vs. Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
Date:   Sun., Dec. 29
Time: 1:03 p.m. 
Location:  Lincoln, Neb.
Arena:  Pinnacle Bank Arena
Tickets: Huskers.com/Tickets

NEBRASKA CORNHUSKERS
2019-20 Record: 5-7 (1-1 Big Ten)
Head coach: Fred Hoiberg
    Record at Nebraska: 5-7 (1st year)
    Career NCAA Record: 120-63 (6th year)

TEXAS A&M-CORPUS CHRISTI ISLANDERS
2019-20 Record: 4-8
Head coach: Willis Wilson
    Record at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi: 128-139 (9th year)
    Career Record: 346-386 (26th year)

BROADCAST INFO
Television: BTN
    Play-by-play: Chris Vosters      
    Analyst: Nick Bahe    
Online Broadcast: Fox Sports App
Radio: Learfield IMG College 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. 
SiriusXM (Internet): Ch. 372        XM: Ch. 372

Huskers Take on Islanders Sunday Afternoon
Lincoln -- The Nebraska men's basketball team hits the court for the final time in 2019 on Sunday afternoon, as the Huskers take on Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.  Tipoff at Pinnacle Bank Arena is set for 1 p.m. and a limited number of tickets are available for purchase by visiting Huskers.com/Tickets or at the Pinnacle Bank Arena box office beginning 90 minutes prior to tipoff.

The Kids Zone on the North Concourse will open 90 minutes prior to tipoff and will be open until 12:45 p.m. Sunday's game will also feature a halftime performance from the legendary Red Panda. 

Sunday's matchup will be carried nationally on BTN with Chris Vosters and Nick Bahe on the call. The game can also be streamed via the web, smartphones, tablets and connected devices through the Fox Sports app.

Fans can follow all of the action across the state of Nebraska on the Learfield IMG College 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.

Nebraska (5-7) looks to bounce back from a disappointing 75-74 loss to North Dakota on Dec. 21. In that game, the Huskers rallied from an eight-point deficit to take a 71-69 lead after a Matej Kavas 3-pointer, but could not hold on for the win. De'Sean Allen-Eikens free throw with 7.3 seconds left broke a 74-all tie, while Dachon Burke missed a potential game winner at the buzzer for NU. Cam Mack led four Huskers in double figures with 19 points, seven rebounds and seven assists, while Kavas came off the bench for a season-high 12 points, including 4-of-5 from 3-point range. 

Mack runs a balanced Husker offense, as the sophomore is averaging 13.0 points and 6.7 assists per game, piloting an attack that has eight players averaging at least 5.8 points per game.

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (4-8) comes to Lincoln looking to snap a three-game losing streak after a 71-67 setback at Central Arkansas on Dec. 21. In that game, Islander guard Myles Smith put on a show with a 31-point effort, including 6-of-10 shooting from 3-point range, but Texas A&M-CC could not hold on, as Central Arkansas rallied in the final four minutes for the win. Smith leads the Islanders at 16.7 points per game.

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT
Cam Mack is one of 11 players in Division I - and two in the Big Ten -  with three double-figure assists performances in 2019-20. Mack is 13th nationally with 6.6 assists per game through the Huskers' first 12 contests.

NUMBERS TO KNOW
1.20-to-1 - Nebraska's assist-to-turnover ratio for the season, but since the loss to Georgia Tech on Dec. 4, it is 1.49-to-1, while averaging 16.0 assists per game in that stretch.

.455 - Thorir Thorbjarnarson is tied for seventh in the Big Ten in 3-point percentage entering the weekend. He is 15-of-33 from long range this season after going a combined 6-of-28 behind the 3-point stripe in his first two years. 

8 - Nebraska has had eight of its nine eligible scholarship players reach double figures this season. The Huskers have three players currently averaging double figures.  

17.6 - Points per game for junior guard Dachon Burke over the last three games, as he is shooting 51 percent from the floor, including 47 percent from 3-point range, during that stretch.  
 
5.8 - Rebounds per game for freshman Yvan Ouedraogo, which is fourth among all Big Ten freshmen. His rebounds per game is on track to be the highest by a Husker freshman since Aleks Maric grabbed 6.3 rebounds per game in 2005-06.

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.

SCOUTING TEXAS A&M-CORPUS CHRISTI
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi comes to Lincoln with a 4-8 mark after dropping a 71-67 decision to Central Arkansas on Dec. 21. In that game, Myles Smith led the Islanders with a career-high 31-point effort, including six 3-pointers, and grabbed a team-high seven rebounds while no other player reached double figures. TAMU-CC led 40-29 at the break but was outscored 42-27 in the final 20 minutes in dropping its third straight game.  Nebraska will be the third power conference team the Islanders have faced in 2019-20 after losing at Vanderbilt (71-66) and at Texas A&M (63-60). In all, six of the 12 games the Islanders have played have been decided by six points or less.

Willis Wilson is in his ninth year as head coach at the school and has guided the Islanders to a trio of 20-win seasons and four postseason appearances, including the CIT title game in 2017. Prior to taking the TAMU-CC program, he spent 16 seasons at Rice, finishing his tenure as the school's winningest coach.

Smith, a 6-foot junior guard, paces the Islanders in scoring at 16.7 points per game, while shooting 41 percent from 3-point range. One of two returning starters, he also pulls down 5.6 rebounds per game and is third on the team in both assists and steals. Jashawn Talton also averages double figures, as he scores 12.7 points per game and hauls in a team-high 7.4 rebounds per contest. In all, TAMU-CC has five players averaging at least seven points per game, and the team allows just 65.3 points per game.

Series History: The matchup is the first between Nebraska and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, while Nebraska is 10-2 all-time against current Southland Conference members.
 
LAST TIME OUT
De'Sean Allen Eikens' free throw with 7.3 seconds broke a 74-all tie, as North Dakota withstood Nebraska's final attempt to hold on for a one-point victory at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Dec. 21.

Eikens hit the first free throw, but missed the second and Dachon Burke Jr. grabbed the rebound and raced down the court for Nebraska's final attempt, but his baseline jumper was off the mark to give UND the upset.

Nebraska, which trailed by as many as eight points with just over eight minutes remaining, rallied behind the shooting of Matej Kavas, who had nine of his season-high 12 points in the final eight minutes. His 3-pointer started an 8-0 run that tied the score at 61- all with 5:49 left. UND would regain the lead at 64-61 on a 3-point play from Marlon Stewart. Nebraska trailed 69-66 before a Burke basket and Kavas' fourth 3-pointer of the night with 1:42 left gave Nebraska its first lead since the opening minutes, but Allen-Eikens' conventional 3-point play with 1:25 left put the visitors up one.

The Huskers trailed 74-71 before Mack tied the game at 74 with 34.3 seconds remaining in regulation, setting up the final sequence.
 
DID YOU KNOW
• Texas A&M Corpus-Christi is third first-time opponent on the Huskers' non-conference schedule.

• The Huskers have already played three overtime games in the first 12 games of 2018-19, posting a 1-2 record. NU's single-season record is four, set five times, most recently in 2007-08. As of Dec. 27, Nebraska has played in three of the Big Ten's seven overtime games, while the Huskers' three overtime games is third nationally and leads all power conference teams.

• Despite the longer 3-point line this season, Nebraska's two returnees are shooting significantly better from beyond the arc than at any point of their career. Both players are averaging more than a 3-pointer per game, which are the highest rates of their career.
 
Huskers' 3-Point Improvement

Player

Career 3-Pct. Entering 2019-20

3/GM

19-20 3Pt Pct.

3/GM

Burke

.333

0.89

.380

1.58

Thorbjarnarson

.214

0.17

.455

1.25

 
• 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. Over the last nine games dating back to Nov. 22, NU is shooting 38 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

Before Nov. 22

Since Nov. 22

Games

3

9

3 Pt. Pct.

.231

.384

3-Pointers/Gm

6.0

9.3

Att./Gm

26.0

24.3


• With three players averaging double figures, Nebraska has relied on its balance. In its first 12 games, NU has put at least four players in double figures nine times. The Huskers put five players in double figures against Washington State on Nov. 25 and at Creighton on Dec. 7.

• It is not surprising that Nebraska has relied on its 3-point shooting, as Hoiberg's Iowa State teams led the Big 12 in 3-pointers in four of his five seasons at the school. The Huskers are on pace to average 8.5 3-pointers per game, a total which would rank second in school history and be the most since the 2001-02 campaign.
 
Most 3-Pointers/Game in School History

No.

School

Games

3-Pointers/Game

1.

2001-02

28

9.54

-

2019-20

12

8.50

2.

2006-07

31

7.87

3.

2018-19

36

7.50

 
• Nebraska enters Sunday's game third in the Big Ten in turnover margin at +2.3 per game. The Huskers have forced an average of 14.3 turnovers per game to rank third in the Big Ten while averaging 12.0 turnovers per game to rank fourth. During his tenure at Iowa State, Hoiberg's teams ranked in the top three in the Big 12 in fewest turnovers per game in four of his five seasons at the school.

• Nebraska has 10 double-figure scoring runs this season and at least one double-digit run in four of the last six games following the North Dakota game.

• 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 according to noted statistician Ken Pomeroy.
 
Fewest Returning PPG from 2018-19

No.

School

Returning PPG

Pct. of Scoring

1

Nebraska

2.0 PPG

1.9%

2.

Tulane

10.8 PPG

12.2%

3.

South Dakota St.

15.8 PPG

16.9%

4.

Virginia Tech

13.3 PPG

18.1%

5.

Washington

13.9 PPG

19.8%

Courtesy: Virginia Tech SID office
 
• Cam Mack's triple-double against Purdue was the first by a Husker in school history and the first by a Big Ten player this season. As of Dec. 26, only 11 players have had a triple-double this season.

•- Cam Mack is the only Husker in the last 30 years to have multiple points-assist double-doubles in the same season as he had one against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 and at Indiana on Dec. 13 in addition to his triple double.  In fact, it is only the seventh time in the last 30 years that a Husker has had a points-assists double-double. His consecutive points-assists double-double was the first since Brian Carr in December of 1985 (vs. UC-Irvine and Creighton).
 
Husker Points/Assists Double-Doubles (Last 30 years)

No.

Pts.

Asst.

Opponent

Cam Mack

11

12

vs. Purdue, 12/13/19

Cam Mack

15

10

at Indiana, 12/13/19

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

 
THE CHASE FOR 1,000
Despite having only 50 points returning from last season, a pair of Huskers are quickly closing in on 1,000 career points at the collegiate level.

Senior Haanif Cheatham enters the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi contest with 995 points during his career and is five points away from 1,000 for his career. Cheatham, who previously played at Marquette and Florida Gulf Coast, is averaging 12.8 points and shooting a career-best 53.7 percent from the field.

Junior guard Dachon Burke Jr. comes into Sunday's game with 974 points following his 10-point effort against North Dakota. Counting his two seasons at Robert Morris, he needs 26 points to reach that plateau. Burke's season high is 25 points at Indiana on Dec. 13. On the year, he leads NU in scoring at 13.4 ppg, while shooting 43 percent from the floor, including 38 percent from 3-point range.

They will join Matej Kavas, who went over 1,000 career points on Nov. 22. Kavas now has 1,045 career points between his time at Seattle and Nebraska.
 
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 15th nationally in offensive tempo, as their average possession is 15.1 seconds per possession through the North Dakota game.

• In his five seasons as a college coach, Hoiberg's teams have ranked in the top 20 in offensive tempo four times, including top-10 rankings in both 2014 and 2015.

• Hoiberg's first Iowa State team in 2010-11 jumped from 67th to 20th nationally in offensive pace and ranked in the top 40 nationally in adjusted 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 adjusted tempo - the 1999-2000 Huskers under Danny Nee. The Huskers' quickest offensive tempo in the last decade was in 2017-18 when the
Huskers were 140th in offensive tempo.
 
JUCO STANDOUTS MACK AND GREEN STEP INTO LINEUP
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 Texas A&M-Corpus Christi game averaging 13.0 points per game while leading the Huskers in assists (6.7) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.2-to-1). He is also second on squad in rebounding (4.8 rpg) and steals (1.4 spg).

• Mack ranks third in the Big Ten in assists and sixth in steals and is one of only three Big Ten players - Mack, Maryland's Anthony Cowan and Rutgers' Geo Baker - rank in the top-10 in both categories as of Dec. 26.

• His 6.7 assists per game is on pace to rank third in school history, trailing only Brian Carr, who averaged 7.9 assists per game in 1984-85 and 6.7 assists per game in 1985-86.

• He recorded the first triple-double in program history against Purdue on Dec. 15 with 11 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists, setting season bests in both rebounds and assists in NU's 70-54 win.

• Mack is one of only five players nationally - and two in the Big Ten - to have at least three points-assists double-doubles this season. He is tied with Zavier Simpson of Michigan for second nationally.  He also had 13 points and 11 assists against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 and 15 points and 10 assists at Indiana on Dec. 13.

• He's reached double figures 10 times, including a season-high 24-point performance against South Dakota State on Nov. 15.

• 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 9.6 points along with 4.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game. He ranks on the top three on the squad in rebounding, assists, steals (1.0 spg) and blocks (0.5 bpg). Green returned to action against North Dakota after missing the previous two games for a violation of team rules.

• He has been in double figure five times, including a season-high 22 points in an overtime win over Southern on Nov. 22. His two 3-pointers helped key a 10-0 spurt in overtime to seal the win.

• Green nearly posted a double-double against Washington State on Nov. 25 with 16 points and eight rebounds in 27 minutes.

• He nearly had a double-double against Southern Utah on Nov. 9 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 in 2019, 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 coming to Nebraska for his final year.

Cheatham has played some of the best basketball of his career over the last month. Over Nebraska's last eight games, he's averaging 15.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, while typically guarding the opponent's top scoring threat.

• Cheatham has reached double figures in seven of the Huskers' last eight games, including a 21-point, six-rebound performance at Indiana on Dec. 13. He had six straight double-figure efforts from Nov. 25-Dec. 13, the second-longest streak of his collegiate career.

• Cheatham posted his first career double-double with 14 points and a career-high 11 rebounds at Georgia Tech on Dec. 4.

• 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 to garner all-tournament honors.

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 13.4 points and 3.8 rebounds per game.

Burke has reached double figures eight times, including a 25-point effort against Indiana on Dec. 13 and a 21-point performance against South Florida on Nov. 27. Burke leads the Huskers in 3-pointers (19) and is shooting nearly 40 percent from 3-point range.

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.

• He is one of the youngest players in the country, as he won't turn 18 until after the 2020 Big Ten Tournament.

• Ouedraogo has started all 12 games for the Huskers, averaging 5.8 points and a team-high 5.8 rebounds per game in just over 20 minutes per game.

• He could become just the third freshman to lead NU in rebounding in a season, joining Aleks Maric (2005-06) and John Turek (2001-02).

• Ouedraogo has played some of his best basketball recently, averaging 8.0 points and 8.0 rebounds per game over the Huskers' last three contests.

• Ouedraogo has grabbed five or more rebounds in five of the Huskers' last six games dating back to Nov. 27.

• His 10 rebounds against Indiana marked the second-highest rebounding total for a Husker freshman in his first conference game, trailing only Dave Hoppen in 1983.

• 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.

• 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 played for the French U-18 squad at the 2019 European Championships in July, as France went 6-1 and finished fifth in the competition.
 
CROSS LIFTS BENCH PRODUCTION
Freshman Kevin Cross has been a key contributor for the Huskers. The 6-foot-8 freshman from Little Rock, Ark., has been the first Husker off the bench in all 12 games and ranks fifth on the team in scoring at 7.3 points per game while chipping in 4.3 rebounds per game.

• Cross is seventh among Big Ten true freshmen in scoring and fourth in rebounding as of Dec. 26.

• He comes off a nine-point, five-rebound effort against North Dakota on Dec. 21, marking the third straight game he has grabbed at least five rebounds. He has five-or-more rebounds seven times this season.

• Cross has been in double figures four times off the bench, including a season-high 19 points against Southern Utah. He became the first freshman in 73 games to pace the Huskers in scoring, while his 19-point effort was the highest by a Husker rookie since Shavon Shields in 2013.

• 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.
 
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 shot 40 percent or better in all three of his seasons at Seattle. Kavas' .435 career percentage ranks 11th among active Division I players.

• 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 comes off his best performance of the year, hitting 4-of-5 3-pointers against North Dakota on Dec. 21. It was the 18th time in his career he had 4-or-more 3-pointers in a game.

• As a sophomore at Seattle, Kavas led the WAC in both 3-point percentage (.464) and 3-pointers per game (2.8).

• Kavas' 186 career 3-pointers would ranks third 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).





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