Like the game against Northwestern, the Huskers started out strong and played well.
Just like Northwestern, they couldn't hold together for the win.
Despite the size and athletic advantages in the Hoosier team Nebraska came into The Vault ready to play. There was aggression, speed, and the baskets fell. For 20 minutes the Huskers fought against a well sized Indiana team.
Nebraska came out of the first half shooting 51.7% from the floor and only 5 turnovers. Indiana, a team that has struggled in this area, ended it with 8 turnovers. This greatly helped the Huskers to a 39-36 halftime lead.
Crean made the appropriate changes at halftime and once the Hoosiers took over the lead, they barely let it go. Yogi Ferrell lead the team against Nebraska with 24 points and 3 rebounds. 15 of which were in the second half. Thomas Bryant held the paint with 19 points and 4 rebounds. This is all with their top scorer, James Blackmon, out with a knee injury.
Crean said IU forcing 9 turnovers and not allowing NU any fastbreak points in the second half was as big of a key as anything for Indiana.— Robin Washut (@RobinWashut) January 2, 2016
While Nebraska did let this game out of their hands they did have four players in double digits. Andrew White III lead the starters with 16 points and 6 rebounds while Jack McVeigh came off the bench and matched him evenly with 16 and 6 respectively. Benny Parker had another hot night with 10 points while Shavon Shields started out slow but ended the evening with 10 points and 6 rebounds.
Nebraska has done this a few times this season. They start off aggressive and hungry. Pushing whomever they are playing as hard as they can. Then, either late in the first half or later in the second, they lose focus. The team either can't buy a basket or they get too soft on defense. Hopefully the coaching staff can get to the bottom of it before we get too deep into conference play.
The Big Ten is not going to get any easier as the season goes on. Nebraska needs to find ways to get out of these scoring droughts and attack for the entire 40 minutes if they want to see the post season. Yes, they are young. We have stated that multiple times this season. Even with that youth there are plenty of veterans on that team who should be able to pull it together.
Up next the Huskers play a tough Iowa team in Iowa City. They are coming off two big back to back wins. One against Purdue and the other to Michigan State who they knocked off their #1 ranking.