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Nebraska Men’s Basketball Recap: Wisconsin dismantles Nebraska 88-72

The Huskers defense had zero answers for the Badgers offense.

NCAA Basketball: Indiana at Nebraska Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

First Half Analysis:

Wisconsin led 51-38 at the half as the story has to go to the Wisconsin offense. The Badgers could do almost anything from anywhere in the half court, and the stats prove that to be correct. The Badgers shot 19-32 from the floor for 59.4%, including 7-13 from the three-point line for 53.8%. The Badgers collected 17 rebounds, including the only 4 offensively in the entire half. The biggest stat is the points in the paint, as Wisconsin had 22. Admittedly for the Huskers, this was as bad a half defensively since the second half of the Minnesota game.

Nebraska had an okay half themselves. The Huskers shot 14-26 for 53.8% from the floor, including 6-12 for 50% from 3. Nebraska struggled from the free-throw line, only going 4-7. The other big factors were fouls and turnovers, as Nebraska committed 9 and 6 respectively.

Wisconsin had 9 of the 10 guys who played in the first half score, with Tyler Wahl leading the way with 10. Connor Essegian, who made 3 three-point attempts, had 9, while AJ Storr and Chucky Hepburn each had 8. Steven Crowl led the Badgers with 4 rebounds, while Wahl and Storr each had 3.

Nebraska was led by Keisei Tominaga, who finished the half with 12 points. Rienk Mast had 9. Sam Hoiberg led Nebraska in rebounding with 3, while Mast, Jamarques Lawrence, Brice Williams and Josiah Allick each had 2.

Second Half Analysis:

Not much changed from the first half. Wisconsin just got open look after open look. The Badgers were still shooting better than 60% from the floor until the 14 minute mark of the second half. The biggest problem for Nebraska was anytime they would cut the lead to 11, the Badgers immediately answered with a 5-0 run or better. Nebraska never got within 10 the entire second half. 11 Badgers scored in the second half, which tells you everything you need to know about the defense today by the Huskers.

Final Stats and Thoughts:

Nebraska finished the ballgame shooting 26-53 for 49.1% from the floor, including 12-26 for 46.2% from deep. They went 8-11 for 72.7% from the free-throw line. Nebraska had 26 rebounds, but only 3 offensive ones on the night. The Huskers had 16 assists and 12 turnovers. Nebraska never led in the game.

The Huskers were paced by Keisei Tominaga, who finished with 17 points. Rienk Mast had 16 while Brice Williams was the only other Husker in double digits with 10. Mast and Sam Hoiberg led the way with 6 rebounds apiece, while Josiah Allick contributed with 5. Brice Williams had 6 assists to lead Nebraska.

Wisconsin shot a blistering 33-60 for 55.0% from the floor, including a season high 13-26 for 50% from deep. The Badgers went 9-13 for 69.2% from the charity stripe. Wisconsin had 32 rebounds, 7 of which were offensive. The biggest stat was 36 points in the paint and Wisconsin never trailed, leading by as much as 21 late in the second half.

Of the 11 Badgers who scored, 5 of them finished in double figures. Tyler Wahl led the way with 17, while Chucky Hepburn had 13, Conner Essegian had 12, and AJ Storr and John Blackwell each had 10. Wahl also had 8 rebounds, which led Wisconsin, while Steven Crowl chipped in 7. Hepburn led the way with 6 assists.

All in all this was about a complete beat down by the Badgers. The Husker defense had played this badly in a full game since Creighton, while they had played an overall bad half since Minnesota. Both teams shot the ball particularly well, but Wisconsin was head and shoulders above the Huskers today. Nebraska will need to regroup, and quickly, as another tremendous team led by a big man shows up on Tuesday in the form of Zach Edey and number 1 Purdue. Tipoff on Tuesday will be at 8:00 PM CST at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, and the game will be televised on Peacock.