A year ago, Western Illinois graduate transfer Kobe Webster said he wanted to test himself when he joined Fred Hoiberg’s roster at Nebraska. Now, as Webster’s fifth and final season unfolds in 2021-22, Hoiberg hopes the Academic All-American is the one passing out the exams to opposing defenses with his touch from beyond the arc.
Following a quick start, a year ago, Webster hit a bit of a lull offensively during the Big Red’s 7-20 campaign. Then, after earning a start in each of Nebraska’s final five contests, Webster’s game took off once again. During that final stretch, the 6-foot, senior guard buried 16 of 37 (.432) three-point attempts and averaged 13 points, 2.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.4 steals per contest.
For the year, Webster played in all 27 games and averaged 23.1 minutes, 8.1 points, 1.7 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 0.6 steals. He reached double figures in scoring 12 times and made 78 of 204 (.382) field goals, 46 of 121 (.380) 3-pointers and 17 of 26 (.654) free throws for the year. Webster scored 20 points against Georgia Tech last December and ripped the cords for a Nebraska career-high 23 points against Northwestern in March.
Webster, who earned a management degree from Western Illinois in three years, carried a 3.75 GPA in his first year at Nebraska while working on his master’s degree in educational administration to earn Third Team Academic All-American honors. He was the first Husker Academic All-American since Shavon Shields was named to the first team in 2015 and 2016.
With a fifth year added to his college career, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Webster needs 364 points this season to eclipse the 2,000-point mark for his collegiate career. Should he play in all 31 regular season games, Webster would reach that milestone by averaging 11.8 points per contest.
As a freshman at Western Illinois, Webster was named to the All-Newcomer Team in the Summit League after averaging 15.9 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.5 assists. The two-time selection to the Summit League’s All-Academic Team averaged 17 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists as a sophomore to earn Second Team All-League honors.
Webster was once again named to the league’s second team as a junior after averaging 17.1 points, 3.2 caroms and 3.6 assists. He finished his Leatherneck career with 1,417 points.
Webster was a 2-Star point guard coming out of Park Tudor High School in Indianapolis. The Panthers posted an 86-18 record during Webster’s run and won state championships when Hoiberg’s sharpshooter was just a high school freshman and sophomore.
Through his first three seasons, Webster scored 629 points and averaged 9.3 points per contest while producing 31 double-digit scoring efforts. As a senior, Webster earned third-team All-State honors after averaging 16 points, four rebounds and four assists per outing.
If Nebraska is going to make a run towards the top half of the league and play its way into the NCAA Tournament in 2021-22, the Huskers are going to have to stretch some of the B1G’s rugged defenses. Webster is one of several Huskers that can satisfy Hoiberg’s affinity towards the 3-pointer and create space inside for Nebraska’s bigs.
If Webster can start his final college season with the same outside touch he displayed at the end of his first senior season, look for Nebraska to get off to a fast start and possibly make that postseason run.