Thursday, October 3rd was a special night at the Pinnacle Bank Arena for letterwinner alums and their guests. Not only did they receive a VIP “All Access” tour of the new home for Husker Hoops, they were able to re-connect with letterwinner peers and listen to Athletic Department speakers.
Said basketball letterwinner alum Stephanie Bolli, “it means a great deal to me to maintain the connection from one of the most defining moments in my life.” Walter Powell, who played football for Tom Osborne in the 80’s and now helps lead the Teammates Mentoring program was impressed with the event. “It makes you feel valued and what a cool deal to see all the names of the letterwinners in attendance on the arena ribbon boards – that was a classy touch,” exclaimed Powell.
Approximately 240 total, with more than half being letterwinners from all generations and all sports attended the event. Those in attendance saw the hustle and bustle that goes with the set-up necessary for a major concert with the Eagles playing host to the Pinnacle Bank Arena the next evening. In addition to comments from Director of Athletics Shawn Eichorst, basketball assistants Sunny Smallwood, Shimmy Gray-Miller and Kenya Hunter shared remarks and optimism about the historic first-ever season playing in the Pinnacle Bank Arena.
“All of you, as letterwinners, are the foundation of the Nebraska program that we as coaches and our student-athletes are working to uphold day in and day out,” said Associate Head Coach Smallwood, now in her 8th season with Nebraska. Coach Gray-Miller told the audience they would see an even better and more complete Jordan Hooper lead the Huskers yet recognizing that current WNBA Minnesota Lynx rookie Lindsey Moore leaves a void that will hopefully be filled by talented sophomore Rachel Theriot.
First-year Nebraska Men’s Assistant Coach, Kenya Hunter represented the men’s program and is in awe about the excitement and passion for the program. “It’s amazing, 8,000 at a scrimmage, more than 15,000 season ticket holders and elite level facilities, the future looks very, very bright.” Added Hunter, “we have several guys who either redshirted or sat out last season that will bring tremendous athleticism and talent to our team this season.
Friday, November 8th is the tip-off for both the basketball programs as the women open at 12 noon vs. UCLA and the men play in the evening against Florida Gulf Coast. The next major N-Club Social will take place on Thursday, February 6th at 6:30 p.m. at the Devaney Center. Letterwinner alums and guests will have the opportunity to see the renovated Devaney, new volleyball facilities, indoor track and field and state-of-the-art Hendricks Training Complex.