clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Post-game wrap-up: Nebraska 63, San Jose State 46

New, comments

Thank goodness for the smothering presence of the Husker defense.

Despite the Huskers going scoreless in the first 9 minutes of the second half and scoring only 5 points in the first 13 minutes of the half, a span in which the Huskers saw an 18-point halftime lead close to only 5 points, the defense sparked the key two minutes that saw the lead explode back to 16, which was all the Husker D needed.

The Good: Nine players played at least sixteen minutes, and no one played more than 24 (Steve Harley).  Ten different players scored.  The Huskers outrebounded the Spartans 42-38, and forced 25 turnovers with 16 steals, and turned those into 31 points.  The Huskers shot 44% in the first half and 58% from behind the arc (an effective field goal percentage of 54%)

The Bad: 17 of Nebraska's 25 second-half points came between the third and fourth media timeouts.  The Huskers shot an abysmal 8-30 in the second half (and 1 of 9 from behind the arc -- an effective percentage of 28.3%).  Sixteen turnovers isn't great.  Chris Balham started, but only played 8 minutes.  The Huskers were 9 of 18 from the free throw line -- never a good sign.

Report Card

Offense: D.  For the first half and the span from 7:12 to 3:52 in the 2nd half, the Huskers probably get an A-.  But, the tail end of the first half and the first 13 minutes of the second half were so atrocious that they pull down the overall grade.  The free throw shooting is, as usual, a concern.

Defense: A.  16 steals and 25 forced turnovers on 65 San Jose State possessions, meaning that more than 40% of defensive possessions ended without a shot, which is amazing.  If they keep that up, they'll be in every game.

Rebounding: B.  Despite having a significantly small lineup, the Huskers outrebounded San Jose State, and got 14 offensive boards (it helps that they missed a lot of shots).

Ball Handling: B.  16 Turnovers isn't bad, but could be better.  There were a few silly passes, though, and some out-of-control play.

Coaching: B+.  Doc has a gameplan that takes advantage of Nebraska's biggest advantage: an 11-deep rotation, and made it work.  The Huskers hustled all day, and that was the big difference.

Overall: B.  A solid opening performance, despite the failure of the offense in the second half.  If the offense can play consistently like it did in the first half, and the defense play like this all year, it could be happy times in Huskerland.

Player of the Game:  Toney McCray.  17 points and 9 boards in 23 minutes off the bench is a great Husker debut for the redshirt freshman.  Brandon Richardson and Sek Henry get big nods, too, for their hustle and key defensive plays to put the game away late.

Next: Wednesday at TCU.