Kelsey Griffin, doing what she does best. Winning. (AP Photo - Gail Burton)
Wednesday evening could be one to remember for Nebraska basketball fans.
First up on the slate are the Husker men, who visit Ames tonight in an attempt to stop the
bleeding hemorraging that's been occuring in league play this year. This game is important, in that it's our best chance to get one more conference win this year. Sure, we could get lucky in either the final few games, or the conference tournament. But realistically, this is it. This is their last real shot. Iowa State has also crumbled this season, and been nothing short of a letdown to Cyclone fans with high expectations.
Second, and most intriguing, are the women. There couldn't be a better setup for this game. Visiting a hostile Lloyd Noble Center in Norman, the third-ranked Huskers will put their perfect 25-0 record on the line. As if that wasn't enough drama to fill a Wednesday night in the midwest, the Huskers will also have a chance to secure their first ever Big 12 crown. The #11 Oklahoma Sooners still have an outside shot at catching the Big Red, although they will need help, but that should provide enough motivation for them to give us all they've got.
(more after jump..)
Well, not much as far as storylines here, save for the chance at unprecedented suckage.
Wait, oh yeah...that Quincy Hankins-Cole fella got suspended. Academic "Issues". Great timing Quince', you were our best body against the physical duo of Brackins and Gilstrap. Now, it looks like we'll have to bang into these dudes with Ryan Anderson, Myles Holley, and Brandon Ubel. Two of which are undersized, and the third being too
It's a battle for the basement folks, and losing this game could set us on track for the worst conference season since 1962. After wandering over to the Clone Chronicles, it's interesting to find the same type of discontent amongst ISU fans, illustrated by the number of fans that are actually predicting an ISU loss tonight. At the same time, Ken Pomeroy has projected the Huskers to win the following two games versus Texas Tech,and Colorado. Something I'm not sure I agree with. My original "Bum Fights" post was for the Colorado game earlier this year, so here we go with our second installment. Iowa State versus Nebraska for the right to feed the rats. Yay.
Any upsides to talk about with the men? Maybe we win out and place 10th in the conference? That would be something special, considering the stretch we've had. Over at Big 12 Hoops, two Huskers made the All-Jersey team for the Big 12. Ryan Anderson for the best player sporting #44, and Tony McCray for the best player with #30(Yes, he's been out since the 3rd game of the season, but he only needed to beat out a guy who hasn't played at all this year. Big whoop.)
Let's give the Cornhusker men one last surge of support, and hope that we put together a win streak to end the year. I'll be in Ames for this one, making myself a target for the "Clowns" to throw peanuts at while taunting about the football game. (I'm getting my bail money ready as we I write this) Maybe we get lucky in the Big 12 conference tournament? Maybe we get payback against a KU, Mizzou, or Texas for the beatings we took earlier this year? I've got a fair amount of "rah-rah" left for these guys, how 'bout you? Get on the damn thread! (Jon will be hosting tonight in my absence. Thanks Jon.)
You know it's a big game, when the local cable channels are getting into the action. Cox and DirectTV are set to televise the game in Nebraska viewing areas Lincoln, Omaha, and Grand Island. Sounds about right, as every Husker hoops fan will undoubtedly want to watch this one. The two top teams in the conference, ranked eleventh and third in the land, and an un-beaten streak on the table. Nebraska hopes to equal the best conference record in history by going undefeated in league play. Guess who holds the only other record? That's right, the 2008-09 Oklahoma Sooners.
Teams are gunning for the Huskers, looking for any weaknesses in the powerful Nebraska lineup. So far, no team has succeeded, although the games lately have been closer than we'd like. Nebraskas last 5 games have been won by an average of only 10 points, as opposed to the 24 point average spread in all the games prior to that. I'm not troubled by this in the least bit. A few of these last few games could have been losses, as the players bodies are starting to feel the wear and tear of a long season at the top. Rather than fold under the pressure, the ladies have hung in there and played gritty basketball late in the game.
Oklahoma's Danielle Robinson brings a 19ppg average to the contest, as well as 5 assists per game. Four others in the Sooner lineup are also averaging double digit numbers in the scoring department, so this will be a test for the Nebraska defense. Oklahoma's defense was itself pushed by Kansas State on Sunday, trailing by 21 points before pulling ahead and eventually winning by 6 points in Manhattan.
The Sooners will likely have a shot in this one at home, but I like the magic so far this year. Barring an "off" game by Kelsey Griffin or Yvonne Turner, I think the Huskers say hello to their first Big 12 regular season trophy. Hopefully just one of several awards to come our way this season.
Tipoff: (M) 6:35pm CST - (W) 7pm CST
Venues: (M) Hilton Coliseum in Ames, IA - (W) Llyod Noble Center in Norman, OK
Television: (M) ESPN Fullcourt, FS Midwest - (W) MyTV-Time Warner Cable in Lincoln (ch. 110) Charter cable (Ch. 17), Cox Cable Omaha (Ch. 122) Direct TV (Ch. 25)
Radio: IMG Husker Sports Network (98.1 FM-KFGE in Lincoln, 93.3 FM-KTWI Omaha, 880 Am KRVN in Lexington)
Internet Radio/Stats: www.Huskers.com
Combined Game Thread: www.CornNation.com