Nebraska resumes Big Ten Conference action on Thursday night as they host the Iowa Hawkeyes to Pinnacle Bank Arena. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m. The game will be televised nationally on BTN and carried on the Huskers Radio Network with coverage carried on 95.3 FM KBBN for central Nebraska.
Nebraska (7-6, 0-2 Big Ten) used a strong start and a balanced attack in posting a 75-65 win over Queens on Dec. 20 as part of the Battle in the Vault. The Huskers, who never trailed, used a pair of 11-0 runs in the first half to take control and built a 17-point halftime. Queens got to within nine points midway through the second half, but could get no closer as the Huskers notched a 10-point win. Sam Griesel’s 16 points led five Huskers in double figures, as Nebraska shot 53 percent from the field and enjoyed a 41-35 advantage on the glass to snap a three-game losing streak.
Nebraska features a balanced attack with six players averaging at least 9.4 points per game, including three players in double figures. Senior forward Derrick Walker tops the Huskers in both scoring (14.0 ppg) and rebounding (8.0 rpg) and is second in assists (3.0 apg). Walker, who has been in double figures in seven of the last eight games, had 13 points, six rebounds and a career-high six assists against Queens. He is shooting 66.7 percent from the field.
Iowa (8-4, 0-1 Big Ten) has been off since a stunning 93-82 loss to Eastern Illinois on Dec. 21. The Hawkeyes were short-handed, as they were without starters Kris Murray and Connor McCaffery because of injuries. Filip Rebraca’s 24 points, eight rebounds and five steals led four Hawkeyes in double figures. Eastern Illinois shot 72 percent in the second half and outscored the Hawkeyes, 55-38, to earn the victory.
Numbers to Know
21 – Nebraska’s NET strength of schedule is 21st nationally and leads the Big Ten as of Dec. 27. Nebraska is the only Big Ten program with a NET SOS in the top-30 entering this week’s action.
.662 – Derrick Walker’s career field goal percentage at Nebraska. He is on track to set NU’s career record in that category. Larry Cox (.625, 1974-76) and Dave Hoppen (.600, 1983-86) are the only two Huskers with career field goal percentages above .600.
11.9 – Nebraska is allowing its opponents only 11.9 free throw attempts per game. The Huskers have held six opponents to 10 free throws or less, including five at Creighton and eight at Indiana. On the other hand, NU is getting to the line an average of 15.6 times per game.
4 – Nebraska’s Sam Griesel is one of only four Big Ten players averaging at least 10.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game, joining Penn State’s Jalen Pickett, Michigan State’s A.J. Hoggard and Indiana’s Jalen Hood-Schifino.