clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Nebraska WBB vs Michigan Preview

Former Husker Leigha Brown has been tearing it up for the ranked Wolverines

Scott Bruhn

The Huskers travel to Michigan to take on the Wolverines and their former teammate Leigha Brown. Brown transferred out of the Husker program last season after coming off the bench despite being the leading scorer for Nebraska.

Nebraska Cornhuskers (5-3, 3-2 Big Ten) vs. 15/14 Michigan Wolverines (7-0, 2-0 Big Ten)

Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021, 5 p.m. (CT)

Crisler Center - Ann Arbor, Michigan

Live Video: B1G Network+

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 has pulled off two upsets in a row and improved to 5-3 overall and 3-2 in the Big Ten with a hard-fought 53-50 win over Rutgers on Sunday. Sam Haiby, who was named the Big Ten Player of the Week by College Sports Madness and earned a spot on the Big Ten

Sophomore Isabelle Bourne also has solidified herself as a rising star in the Big Ten. The 6-2 forward from Canberra, Australia notched her second straight double-double with 11 points and a career-high 12 rebounds in the win over Rutgers. She was also the primary defender responsible for holding Big Ten scoring leader Arella Guirantes to just eight points on 3-of-24 shooting.

Kate Cain, a 6-5 center from Middletown, N.Y., joins Haiby and Bourne as Nebraska’s tri-captains in 2020-21. Cain is averaging 2.9 blocks per game this season to go along with 7.5 points and 6.0 rebounds.

Ashley Scoggin has stepped into a major role in her first year as a Husker. The 22-year-old redshirt sophomore put up double figures for the third straight game with 11 points - all in the second half - in Nebraska’s win over Rutgers. She owns season highs with 16 points against both Purdue and Idaho State and is averaging 8.1 points per game while hitting 14-of-30 threes (.467).

Junior Bella Cravens also has been a major contributor as a starter in Big Ten play. The 6-3 forward from Laie, Hawaii, is averaging 6.6 points and a team-best 9.6 rebounds in conference games, including a career-high-tying 16 rebounds in the win over Illinois. She added 13 boards in Sunday’s win over Rutgers.

Scouting the Michigan Wolverines

Michigan enters Thursday’s game at 7-0 overall and 2-0 in the Big Ten following an 84-63 victory over No. 15 Northwestern on Sunday in Evanston, Ill. The Wolverines climbed to No. 15 in the Associated Press Poll, marking the third Big Ten opponent Nebraska has faced since Dec. 20 that was ranked No. 15 at game time. Michigan came in at No. 14 in the USA Today Coaches Poll Tuesday.

First-team All-Big Ten forward Naz Hillmon leads Michigan in scoring and rebounding with 24.6 points and 9.9 rebounds per game. The 6-2 forward has hit 66 percent of her shots from the field and 80 percent of her free throws but has not attempted a three-pointer this season. In just over two seasons with the Maize and Blue, Hillmon has already amassed 1,153 points and 571 rebounds.

Michigan has been bolstered by the addition of Leigha Brown. The former Husker is averaging 19.7 points, 3.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and a team-best 1.4 steals per game. Brown, who was named the Big Ten Player of the Week (Jan. 4), is also shooting 55.6 percent (10-18) from three-point range and 65.4 percent (51-78) overall from the field. Brown was an honorable-mention All-Big Ten choice and the Big Ten Sixth Player of the Year last season at Nebraska (14.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg).

Michigan is averaging 87.9 points per game while shooting 53.9 percent from the floor, including 43 percent (49-114) from three-point range. The Wolverines have hit 76 percent of their free throws. Michigan has scored at least 76 points in each of its first seven games, including 90 points four times.

Michigan owns a plus-13.7 (44.0-30.3) team rebounding margin, but carries a minus-3.9 team turnover margin per game. The Wolverines are surrendering just 61.1 points per game while holding the opposition to just 35.1 percent field goal shooting. Michigan has held opponents to just 24.3 percent (33-136) success from beyond the arc.

NEBRASKA CORNHUSKERS (5-3, 3-2 BIG TEN)

No. Player Ht. Yr. Pos. PPG RPG
14 Bella Cravens 6-3 Jr. F 5.8 7.6
34 Isabelle Bourne 6-2 So. F 14.1 7.9
31 Kate Cain 6-5 Gr./Sr.C 7.5 6.0
0 Ashley Scoggin 5-7 RSo. G 8.1 2.1
4 Sam Haiby 5-9 Jr. G 16.1 7.1

Off the Bench
2 Trinity Brady 5-11 So. G 8.5 5.0
21 Annika Stewart 6-3 Fr. F 6.4 4.0
10 Whitney Brown 5-8 Fr. G 3.1 1.6
11 Ruby Porter 5-10 Fr. G 2.2 1.3
5 MiCole Cayton 5-9 Gr./RJr. G DNP

Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998) Fifth Season at Nebraska (64-65) 14th Season Overall (257-174)

15/14 MICHIGAN WOLVERINES (7-0, 2-0 BIG TEN)

No. Player Ht. Yr. Pos. PPG RPG
00 Naz Hillmon 6-2 Jr. F 24.6 9.9
15 Hailey Brown 6-1 Sr. F 10.3 4.7
1 Amy Dilk 6-0 Jr. G 9.0 5.1
14 Akienreh Johnson 6-0 Gr./Sr.G 10.5 4.7
32 Leigha Brown 6-1 Jr. G/F 19.7 3.6

Off the Bench
24 Michelle Sidor 5-8 So. G 5.4 1.2
33 Emily Kiser 6-3 Jr. F 5.0 6.0
3 Maddie Nolan 5-9 So. G 4.6 5.6
44 Cameron Williams 6-3 Fr. F 2.7 1.8
23 Danielle Rauch 5-8 Jr. G 2.6 2.1
25 Whitney Sollom 6-4 Fr. F 1.5 3.3
30 Elise Stuck 6-1 Fr. G/F 1.4 0.6

Head Coach: Kim Barnes Arico (Montclair State, 1993) Ninth Season at Michigan (184-96) 25th Season Overall (454-302)