The Nebraska Cornhuskers men’s basketball team delivered an even more resounding victory over the Iowa Hawkeyes Thursday night than the football team did in Iowa City a month ago. The Huskers blew out the Hawkeyes in dominating fashion, notching a 66-50 win to move to 1-2 in Big Ten play and 8-6 overall. The win also snapped a five game losing streak to Iowa in the series.
The win over Iowa is the first by the men’s basketball team since since Jan. 7, 2020, a 76-70 home victory. It also marks the first time UNL has beaten Iowa in both football and men’s basketball in the same academic year since 2012-2013 (The Huskers won the first matchup in Lincoln then lost in Iowa City about two weeks later).
Nebraska’s win was a team effort as five players posted double figures in scoring. Juwan Gary led the Huskers with 14 points while falling just shy of a double-double with nine rebounds. C.J. Wilcher scored 13, Sam Griesel posted a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds (team-high) while leading the team with five assists, and Derrick Walker and Emmanuel Bandoumel both scored 10.
Walker added eight rebounds and Wilhelm Briedenbach grabbed seven. Four Huskers posted a steal apiece while five boasted a block each with Briedenbach notched a team high two blocks.
Kris Murray for Iowa led all scorers with 17 points while Filip Rebraca scored 16 while posting a double-double with 13 rebounds and adding a technical foul in the second half for good measure.
Nebraska trailed for just :59 and tied for 1:43. All of that came in the opening minutes because the Huskers seized the lead on a layup by Walker at the 17:18 mark and never trailed or tied again. By the 5:48 mark, UNL had pushed it lead to 21, up 29-8 over Iowa.
The Hawkeyes shooting was absolutely horrible in the first half, going just 8-39 from the field. The only thing that managed to keep the game from staying as wide open as the 21-point margin was six straight 3-pointers in the final 5.5 minutes of the first half.
The second half saw Nebraska push its lead to as much as 24-points twice before Iowa clawed back to make it just a tiny bit more respectable. Suffocating defense and poor shooting by the Hawkeyes gave an even worse stat line in the second half for Iowa, though. The Hawkeyes went just 11-34 from the field and 1-9 from 3-point range.
While the win is not the largest in program history over Iowa — that distinction goes to a 67-43 win over the Hawkeyes Dec. 3, 1956 at the NU Coliseum — it is the largest margin as Big Ten foes and just the second time UNL has posted a double digit win over the Hawkeyes.
Nebraska next hits the road at Michigan State on Tuesday, Jan. 3. The game is set for a 6 p.m. Central Time tipoff and will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.