One of the more intriguing returnees for the Huskers is forward Christian Standhardinger. The sophomore showed the ability to slash to the basket and finish as well as a soft touch that extends to 3-point range during his freshman year.
Standhardinger, who didn't make his Husker debut until the start of Big 12 play, averaged 8.1 points and 3.8 points per game to rank fourth on the team in scoring. The 6-9 forward showed the ability to get to the basket, leading NU in free throw attempts in Big 12 action despite averaging just 16 minutes per game. He moved into the starting lineup down the stretch, averaging 12 points and 8.4 rebounds per game over his final five games, highlighted by a 25-point, eight-rebound performance at Iowa State.
Standhardinger paced the Huskers to a 4-0 mark on their foreign tour, averaging team highs in both points (15.5) and rebounds (7.5). He hit 54 percent of his shots from the floor and also converted 17-of-23 from the foul line. Standhardinger had 13 rebounds and 11 points in a win over the Bahamas Select team and finished with 22 points on 10-of-13 shooting in the final game of the trip.
Standhardinger got a late start to his freshman year, as he was forced to sit out the first 15 games of the season (all of the non-conference slate) as a result of an NCAA amateurism ruling and did not make his debut until the Big 12 opener at Texas A&M on Jan. 9. Once he got on the court, Standhardinger made a solid impact as a rookie, averaging 8.1 points and 3.8 rebounds per game while hitting 40.9 percent from the field and 37.5 percent from long range. He also was one of the team's top free throw shooters, hitting 78.3 percent while getting to the line more times than any Husker in conference action.
Standhardinger made a solid debut, collecting 13 points and grabbing seven rebounds at Texas A&M. He hit 4-of-7 shots from the floor, including a 3-pointer that gave NU the lead midway through the second half. The effort was one of five double-figure scoring games for Standhardinger as a freshman. It was also one of six games with at least five rebounds, including four of his last five contests of the season.
After posting 14 points, including hitting 8-of-9 at the free throw line, against Colorado, Standhardinger recorded just 32 points over the next seven games before exploding for 25 points at Iowa State. He hit 9-of-17 shots against the Cyclones, including a pair of 3-pointers, and added a career-best eight rebounds in his first career start. His scoring total was the ninth highest by a freshman in school history and the most ever in the first career start by a freshman. The impressive effort against ISU was the beginning of a strong finish to his season, as he averaged 12.0 points and 5.4 rebounds per game over his last five contests. Standhardinger hit 45.9 percent from the field and 81.5 percent (22-of-27) from the charity stripe in that span while adding 1.2 assists and 1.0 steals per game.
Standhardinger came to Nebraska from Erdgas Ehingen, the same school that produced Husker center Christopher Niemann. In 2008-09, Standhardinger averaged a stellar 22.2 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.6 steals over 26 games. He hit 54.7 percent (151-of-276) from the floor, including 40.6 percent (43-of-106) from beyond the arc.
On the year, Standhardinger topped 25 points seven times while posting at least 20 points in 21-of-26 contests. He was named the league's Youngster of the Month on two occasions and once was the Player of the Month. In possibly his most impressive game of the year, Standhardinger posted a season-best 41 points against Speyer when he hit 11-of-19 from the field with five 3-pointers while draining 14-of-16 at the charity stripe. He also added 13 rebounds in the contest. Standhardinger also had game highs of 16 rebounds, eight assists and six steals in 2008-09. His 16 boards and eight assists came in the same game against Freiburg, when he hit 8-of-17 from the floor to post 22 points.
The previous year, Standhardinger averaged 17.1 points and 7.4 rebounds per game for Ehingen while hitting 47.3 percent from the floor. Standhardinger came to the United States with the same Urspringschule squad as Niemann that played in the Arby's Classic in Bristol, Tenn., in the winter of 2007-08. Standhardinger led the team to a fourth-place finish in the tournament and was the only player from his team named to the all-tournament squad. In the finale of the 2008 U19 German Championship, he scored 37 points and posted 12 rebounds. He also earned top scorer honors at the Europe's Best Junior Tournament in 2007 and was the MVP of the German Top 4 in 2007.
A year earlier while playing for Urspringschule, he scored a career-best 52 points in a contest against Ulm, as he hit 19-of-21 shots in the game. Later that season, he posted a career-high 22 rebounds against Mittlehessen. He averaged 7.1 points and 2.5 rebounds per game in his first year at Urspringschule while hitting 53.9 percent from the field and 66.2 percent at the line. Standhardinger was also a member of the German Junior National Team, where he averaged 8.0 points and 2.0 rebounds per game at the 2007 U18 European Championships. He posted his best games with 16 points on 6-of-8 shooting against Israel and added 15 points with five rebounds against Russia in back-to-back games.
Christian is the son of Elizabeth and Gunter Standhardinger and was born on July 4, 1989. He has twin sisters, Kristin and Kathrin. Christian majors in business management at Nebraska.
While Christian was born and raised in Germany, his mother is originally from the Philippines, making him one of only a handful of Division I basketball players of Filipino heritage.
Both Kristin and Kathrin Standhardinger competed in volleyball at the collegiate level, playing at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Georgia. Both players earned AVCA Division II All-Southeast Region honors in 2009.