Huskers Set for Sunday Showdown with Seminoles
Nebraska Cornhuskers (5-0)
at No. 24 Florida State Seminoles (3-3)
Tucker Center • Tallahassee, Fla. • Sunday, Nov. 27, 1 p.m. (Central)
Live Video Stream: Seminoles All-Access (premium subscribers)
Radio: Husker Sports Network (B107.3 FM-Lincoln; 93.3 FM-Omaha; 880 AM-KRVN, Lexington)
Free Internet Audio: Huskers.com
The young Nebraska women's basketball team takes its 5-0 record into another top-25 showdown when the Huskers battle USA Today/ESPN Coaches No. 24 Florida State on Sunday at the Tucker Center in Tallahassee, Fla.
Tip-off between the Huskers (5-0) and the Seminoles (3-3) is set for 1 p.m. (central), with free live audio from the Husker Sports Network available on Huskers.com. Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch will describe all the action on the Husker Sports Network, including new flagship station B107.3 FM in Lincoln. The game can also be heard on 93.3 FM in Omaha and 880 AM KRVN in Lexington. Live premium video coverage is also available at Seminoles All-Access on seminoles.com.
Nebraska, which received 13 votes in this week's Associated Press Top 25 and one vote in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll, opened its three-game road trip with a 72-64 victory at Florida A&M at the Al Lawson Center in Tallahassee on Friday.
The Huskers' top scorer and rebounder Jordan Hooper led NU with a game-high 21 points and a team-high eight rebounds in the victory. The 6-2 sophomore forward enters the FSU game averaging 19.4 points and 9.2 rebounds per game.
Lindsey Moore, the reigning Big Ten Player of the Week, had her streak of 17 consecutive games scoring in double figures snapped by settling for eight points against the Lady Rattlers on Friday. The 5-9 point guard kept the Huskers unbeaten by dishing out eight assists and grabbing four steals in the win. The junior from Covington, Wash., is averaging 13.6 points and team-bests with 7.4 assists and 2.8 steals per game. Moore, who was an honorable-mention All-Big 12 selection a year ago, also leads the Big Ten Conference with a 4.6-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio on the season.
Freshmen forward Hailie Sample added arguably the best game of her your career with eight points, six rebounds, three assists and a block against Florida A&M on Friday. Fellow freshman forward Emily Cady added six points and eight rebounds in a solid effort. Nebraska's lone active senior Kaitlyn Burke made several key plays down the stretch to help the Huskers secure the victory. NU's most experienced player, Burke has averaged 4.8 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game.
The Huskers have featured a young and deep playing rotation throughout the first five games, with all 11 active players competing in all five games. In fact, Nebraska's bench is averaging 35.2 points and 20 rebounds per game.
Nebraska and Florida State will be meeting for just the second time in school history and the first time in Tallahassee. The Seminoles won the only previous meeting, 100-84, at the Dial Classic in Miami on Dec. 31, 1982. Since then, the Huskers have won nine consecutive games against Florida schools.
Nebraska Cornhuskers (5-0, 0-0 Big Ten)
3 - Hailie Sample - 6-1 - Fr. - F - 3.0 ppg, 5.4 rpg
23 - Emily Cady - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 4.8 ppg, 5.4 rpg
35 - Jordan Hooper - 6-2 - So. - F - 19.4 ppg, 9.2 rpg
00 - Lindsey Moore - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 13.6 ppg, 2.4 rpg
5 - Kaitlyn Burke - 5-7 - Sr. - G - 4.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg
Off the Bench
55 - Adrianna Maurer - 6-3 - So. - C - 6.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg
11 - Tear'a Laudermill - 5-9 - Fr. - G - 7.4 ppg, 2.2 rpg
14 - Katie Simon - 6-2 - RFr. - F - 6.6 ppg, 2.4 rpg
33 - Rebecca Woodberry - 5-10 - RFr. - G - 8.2 ppg, 4.8 rpg
13 - Brandi Jeffery - 5-7 - Fr. - G - 5.6 ppg, 3.2 rpg
10 - Meghin Williams - 6-1 - Jr. - F - 1.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg
21 - Harleen Sidhu 6-1 Sr. F DNP
Head Coach: Connie Yori (Creighton, 1986)
10th Season at NU (171-117); 22nd Season Overall (366-257)
Florida State Seminoles (3-3, 0-0 ACC)
00 - Chasity Clayton - 6-0 - Jr. - F - 11.5 ppg, 4.5 rpg
33 - Natasha Howard - 6-3 - So. - F - 9.0 ppg, 9.2 rpg
54 - Cierra Bravard - 6-4 - Sr. - C - 15.7 ppg, 6.8 rpg
3 - Alexa Deluzio - 5-11 - Jr. - G - 12.0 ppg, 5.2 rpg
10 - Leonor Rodriguez - 5-11 - Jr. - G - 2.0 ppg, 1.7 rpg
-or-14 - Tay'ler Mingo - 5-7 - So. - G - 5.5 ppg, 2.5 rpg
Off the Bench
34 - Chelsea Davis - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 9.5 ppg, 3.8 rpg
20 - Kristi Mokube - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 1.7 ppg, 1.0 rpg
22 - Olivia Bresnahan - 5-11 - So. - G - 1.5 ppg, 1.2 rpg
4 - Emma Loucks - 5-10 - Fr. - G - 0.0 ppg, 0.0 rpg
31 - Ebony Wells - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 0.0 ppg, 0.0 rpg
32 - Lauren Coleman - 6-0 - So. - F - Injured
Head Coach: Sue Semrau (UC San Diego, 1985)
15th Season at FSU (239-177); 15th Season Overall (239-177)
Huskers Have History of Home-Opening Success
Nebraska owns a strong history of season-opening success on the Huskers' homecourt at the Devaney Center. Nebraska improved to 36-2 all-time in home openers with its 95-43 victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Nov. 12, 2011.
From 1981-82 through 2004-05, Nebraska reeled off 24 straight home-opening wins before losing to South Dakota State on Nov. 19, 2005. NU's only other home-opening loss came in an 88-56 setback to Kansas on Nov. 21, 1980.
Nebraska has been strong in its first six home games every season. In fact, NU is 193-33 over the past 38 years in its first six home contests (.854 winning percentage), including 32-6 in the second game of the season. The Huskers stretched their Game No. 2 winning streak to 12 games with a 99-53 win over Mississippi Valley State on Nov. 15. Game No. 3 has traditionally provided the toughest test among the first six home contests for the Huskers, but NU has won five straight in Game No. 3 after an impressive 68-50 run past No. 23 USC in Lincoln on Nov. 18. The Huskers improved to 32-6 all-time in game No. 4 with a 70-50 win over Savannah State.
Huskers Crash Rebounding Mark in win over USC
Coming into the 2011-12 season, one of Nebraska's greatest areas of concern was on the glass. With a starting lineup that features one sophomore (Jordan Hooper) and two true freshman forwards (Emily Cady, Hailie Sample), and a regular rotation off the bench that includes an inexperienced sophomore center (Adrianna Maurer) and a redshirt freshman forward (Katie Simon), the Huskers' youth was cause for concern.
Through the first four games, Nebraska's projected weakness was a source of strength. In fact, in the Huskers' 68-50 win over No. 23 USC on Friday, the young Huskers pulled down more rebounds against an NCAA Division I opponent than any other team in school history.
Nebraska's 66 boards were the most since a school-record 73 rebounds against Division II Nebraska-Omaha on Dec. 19, 1980. The only other game NU has ever grabbed more boards came against then-NAIA Wayne State with 68 on Jan. 28, 1978. The last time Nebraska grabbed more than 60 rebounds in any game came against Oral Roberts on Dec. 31, 1990, when the Huskers pulled down 62.
Nebraska produced a 66-40 rebounding edge against the Women of Troy, while tying the second-highest defensive rebounding mark in school history with 42. The Huskers added 24 offensive boards against USC.
Through four games, Nebraska produced a plus-16.8 rebound margin over the opposition, before being outrebounded 49-42 at Florida A&M Nov. 25. Last season, NU was minus-0.3 rebounds per game on the glass. The team record for rebound margin in a season is plus-8.6 in 1997-98. Only four teams in school history have managed a team rebound margin of plus-5.0 (1994-95, +5.9; 1990-91, +5.6; 1993-94, +5.0).
After opening the season with a plus-seven (45-38) rebound margin in a win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff, the Huskers notched double-figure rebound margins in three straight games (Mississippi Valley State, 49-33, +16; USC, 66-40, +26; Savannah State, 44-26, +18). Despite being outrebounded by FAMU on Friday, the Huskers still carry a plus-12 rebound margin into Sunday's game with Florida State.
Scouting The Florida State Seminoles
Florida State heads into Sunday's game against Nebraska with a 3-3 record following an 85-76 home loss to No. 11 Louisville at the Tucker Center on Friday night. Coach Sue Semrau and the Seminoles opened the season in the top 25 of the Associated Press Poll before starting the season 2-2 with wins over South Florida and Minnesota before back-to-back losses to SEC foes Arkansas and Florida.
Florida State moved to 3-2 by opening the week with a win over Georgia State before its first battle with a ranked Louisville squad. The 'Noles entered the week ranked No. 24 in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll, but slipped out of the AP Top 25.
FSU, which advanced to the second round of the 2011 NCAA Tournament, posted a 24-8 final record that included an 11-3 conference mark and a third-place ACC finish last season.
The Seminoles feature a powerful front line led by 6-4 senior center Cierra Bravard, who enters the game averaging 15.7 points and 6.8 rebounds per game. Last season, Bravard averaged 15.0 points and 7.8 boards per contest. Friday night against Louisville, Bravard poured in a career-high 27 points that included 11-for-11 shooting at the free throw line in 35 minutes of action.
Chasity Clayton, a 6-0 junior forward, has contributed 11.5 points and 4.5 rebounds, while 6-3 sophomore forward 9.0 points and a team-leading 9.2 rebounds per contest. The Seminoles have also received solid production off the bench inside from 6-2 junior forward Chelsea Davis, who has pitched in 9.5 points and 3.8 boards per game.
In the backcourt, 5-11 junior starting guard Alexa Deluzio has averaged 12.0 points and 5.2 rebounds per game. At the starting point guard spot, Leonor Rodriguez has managed 2.0 points and 1.7 rebounds while starting the past two games. Tay'ler Mingo, a 5-7 sophomore, started the first four games and has averaged 5.5 points and 2.5 boards per game. Olivia Bresnahan, a 5-11 sophomore guard, has also produced 1.5 points and 1.2 rebounds per game. In a short playing rotation, Kristi Mokube has been the only other contributor for FSU, averaging 3.3 minutes per game.
As a team, FSU has averaged 68.3 points while allowing 65.2 points per game. The 'Noles have hit just 40.6 percent of their field goal attempts, including just 29.6 percent of their three-point attempts. FSU has connected on 68.5 percent of its free throws, including 17-of-20 against Louisville Friday. The Seminoles own a plus-3.8 rebound margin but a negative-1.0 team turnover margin.
Nebraska carries a nine-game winning streak against Florida teams into Sunday's game at Florida State. The Huskers have not lost to a Florida team since a 100-84 setback to Florida State at the Miami Dial Classic on Dec. 31, 1982. Nebraska is 10-1 all-time against Florida schools, but the only loss came in the only previous meeting between the Huskers and Seminoles.
Huskers in Midst of Nine-Day, Three-Game Road Trip
Nebraska's clash with Florida State will be the second leg of a three-game, nine-day road trip for the Huskers.Nebraska embarked on the nine-day, three-game road trip on Wednesday, Nov. 23 and will head from Florida to Georgia on Monday following the game with the Seminoles. The trip will conclude back in Lincoln late in the day on Thursday, Dec. 1, following a Wednesday night battle with Georgia Tech in Atlanta.
The Huskers opened their first road trip with a 72-64 win over Florida A&M Friday. It was the second meeting between the Huskers and Lady Rattlers of 2011, after NU defeated FAMU, 73-57, in Lincoln on Jan. 2.
After an off-day from competition on Saturday, the Huskers will complete their stay in Tallahassee by taking on USA Today/ESPN Coaches No. 24 Florida State on Sunday, Nov. 27 at 1 p.m. (central). Nebraska will remain in Tallahassee overnight on Sunday, before traveling by bus to Atlanta on Monday.
NU will spend Monday night and Tuesday night in Atlanta, before battling Georgia Tech in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge on Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 6 p.m. (central).
Hooper's 21 Powers Huskers to Victory at Florida A&M
Jordan Hooper scored 15 of her game-high 21 points in the first half to help Nebraska to a 72-64 victory over Florida A&M at the Al Lawson Center in Tallahassee on Friday.
Hooper scored six early points to help shoot the Huskers to a 14-2 lead in the game's first five minutes. Hooper went 4-for-7 from the field in the first half, including a three-pointer, and her final field goal of the first half gave NU its biggest lead at 36-17 with a minute left in the half. The 6-2 forward from Alliance, Neb., added eight rebounds, an assist and two steals on the day for her third 20-point scoring performance of the season.
Freshman Hailie Sample added six of her career-high eight points in the first half. The 6-1 forward from Flower Mound, Texas, added six rebounds, three assists and a block in a strong effort. Fellow freshman forward Emily Cady pitched in six points, eight rebounds and two steals, as NU's starting forwards finished with 35 points and 22 rebounds. For the game, 10 Huskers found the scoring column, including seven in the first half.
Nebraska's defense was the story again in the first half, building the 15-point edge despite shooting just 37.1 percent (13-35) from the field. NU did hit 3-of-8 three-pointers, including lone threes from Adrianna Maurer and Brandi Jeffery off the bench.
The Huskers also outscored FAMU, 8-2 at the free throw line in the first half, but were outrebounded 28-24 by the Lady Rattlers. NU won the turnover battle 9-4 in the opening period.
Despite double-figure scoring performances from Florida A&M's Antonia Bennett, Qiana Donald, Tameka McKelton and Kimberly Sparkman, the Huskers still increased their lead to 19 points on several occasions in the second half before the Rattler rally.
Bennett got hot in the second half, after missing much of the first half with foul trouble, Bennett scored 14 after halftime to cut NU's 15-point halftime lead to six points on two occasions in the final five minutes. Donald also had 14 points in the second half, while pulling down 10 of her 11 rebounds after intermission.
Senior Kaitlyn Burke hit a huge three-pointer with 4:07 left to push Nebraska's lead to 66-57. Burke finished with six points, four rebounds and two assists, including four points in the final five minutes to help the Huskers.
Redshirt freshman Rebecca Woodberry added a big basket with 3:15 to push the Husker lead back to double digits at 68-57, but five straight points from FAMU's Donald cut the NU margin back to six at 68-62 with 1:31 left.
Woodberry, a 5-10 guard from Phoenix, Ariz., then stepped up again with Nebraska's sixth and final three-pointer of the game with 51.5 seconds left to pump the margin back to 71-62. Woodberry finished with seven points and three rebounds in the game.
Donald, who finished with 14 points and 11 rebounds, scored again with 30 seconds left before Lindsey Moore and Burke dribbled out the next 20 seconds while the Rattlers were trying to foul. Moore, who finished with eight points, eight assists and four steals, had her streak of 17 consecutive games scoring in double figures snapped.
For the game, Nebraska hit 28-of-68 shots from the field (41.2 percent), including 6-of-19 three-pointers (31.6 percent). The Huskers also knocked down 10-of-18 free throws. Nebraska won the turnover battle, 16-12, but were outrebounded for the first time this season, 49-42.
Florida A&M hit 25-of-66 shots (37.9 percent) from the floor in the game, including 7-of-20 three-pointers (35 percent), while hitting 7-of-13 free throws (53.8 percent).
Back-to-Back 90-Point Efforts Rare in Husker History
Nebraska opened the season with 95 points against Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Nov. 12, before racing to 99 points against Mississippi Valley State Nov. 15. It marked the second straight season the Huskers have scored 95 points in the opener (Vermont) and 99 points in Game 2 (Miami). While the 90-plus point games have come back-to-back to start the year in back-to-back seasons, the feat is extremely rare in Husker history. In fact, prior to last season, the last time NU had scored 90 or more points in back-to-back games came in February of 1998 (at Oklahoma-101, at Missouri-96).
The last time NU scored 90 points in back-to-back games to open a season came in 1987, when the Huskers opened the year with four straight 90-plus efforts on their way to a Big Eight title and the first NCAA bid in school history.
The only other times NU managed 90 points in back-to-back games to open a season came in both 1981-82 and 1982-83. During the seven-season stretch from 1981-82 through 1987-88, the Huskers scored 90 or more points 42 times.
In the other 31 years of NU women's basketball, the Huskers have produced 90 points only 58 other times, including the first two games of this season.
In 1,123 games of Husker history, NU has scored 90 points on 100 occasions. In the decade that spanned from the 1999-2000 season through the 2008-09 season, the Huskers managed the feat just 12 times.
Nebraska's most recent back-to-back 90-point scoring games were just the 11th back-to-back efforts with 90 or more points in school history, and just the fifth time the feat has been accomplished in the past 21 years.
The 1987-88 Huskers notched a school-record nine 90-point games, matching the nine produced by the 1982-83 Huskers. The 1981-82 squad scored 90 eight times, while the 1983-84 club accomplished the feat on seven occasions. No other Husker team has scored 90 or more points on more than five occasions in any season.
The 2009-10 Huskers hit the 90-point mark three times in 34 games. Before 2009-10, NU had scored 90 points just nine times in Coach Connie Yori's first seven seasons - a span of 218 games. In the last 68 games, Yori's Huskers have hit 90 seven times.
Moore Still Scoring, But Happily Passing More in 2011-12
Through five games, Lindsey Moore has displayed her continued improvement at point guard by averaging 13.6 points and an impressive 7.4 assists in 26 minutes per game. The 2011 honorable-mention All-Big 12 performer from Covington, Wash., is shooting 53.3 percent from the field, 35.3 percent from three-point range and 73.7 percent from the free throw line. She also leads the Huskers with 2.8 steals per game and owns a Big Ten-leading 4.6-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio.
The reigning Big Ten Player of the Week (Nov. 21), Moore had her personal streak of 17 straight games in double digits snapped with eight points, eight assists and four steals in Friday's win over Florida A&M. She notched a season-high 22 points to go along with six assists in NU's 68-50 victory over No. 23 USC on Nov. 18. She also produced her third career double-double with 18 points and 11 assists in the win over Mississippi Valley State on Nov. 15. That performance marked the fourth double-figure assist game of her career.
Last season, Moore averaged 14.1 points and 5.9 assists per game for the season in 37.5 minutes per game, including 17.0 points and 5.9 assists in Big 12 action. Over the final 13 games of her sophomore season, she had a hand in 61 percent (172-282) of NU's made baskets - including 72.5 percent (66-91) in the final four games.
Moore's scoring binge included a career-high 33 points at Kansas on Feb. 26, 27 points and five assists against No. 23 Iowa State on Jan. 26, a 23-point, nine-assist effort against Colorado March 2, a 23-point, eight-assist performance against Missouri on Feb. 22 and seven total games with 17 or more points.
Over the final seven games of 2010-11, Moore took her game to another level by averaging to 20.0 points per game, while shooting a blistering 55.1 percent (54-98) from the field, including 42.9 percent (15-35) from three-point range. She also dished out 7.3 assists per game, including five games with eight or more assists. She also increased her rebounding to 4.6 boards per game during the stretch, while hitting 89.5 percent (17-19) of her free throws.
As a true freshman, Moore was a pass-first point guard that orchestrated one of the best runs in Big 12 history, as the 2010 Huskers rolled to a 30-0 record to start Moore's career and claim NU's lone Big 12 title.
Moore Flying Up Nebraska Career Assist List
In just two seasons and four games, Lindsey Moore has climbed into Nebraska's career top 10 in assists with 374. The 5-9 point guard from Covington, Wash., moved up to No. 7 on the NU career chart after notching eight assists in a season-opening-win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Nov. 12. She added 11 more assists in the win over Mississippi Valley State and six in the win over No. 23 USC. She increased her season total to 37 with eight at Florida A&M to pull within 18 assists of Anna DeForge (392) in sixth.
In 2010-11, Moore finished with 183 assists, which ranked second on NU's sophomore single-season list, trailing only Meggan Yedsena's 195 in 1991-92. It was the fifth-highest single-season total by a Husker in history.
Moore opened her career with the third-best total by a freshman in school history with 154 in 2009-10. If Moore can average 180 assists over her final two seasons at Nebraska, she can set the NU career record of 696 set by four-year starting point guard Meggan Yedsena from 1990-91 to 1993-94.
Improved Hooper Proving Hard to Handle for Husker Foes
By all accounts Nebraska's Jordan Hooper produced an impressive offseason for the Huskers. The 6-2 sophomore forward from Alliance, Neb., focused on adding more dimensions to her offensive game, while improving at the defensive end. Hooper's inside game at both ends has shown impressive gains, and she has added the ability to penetrate to the basket. All of that could cause opposing teams headaches in 2011-12.
Through five games, Hooper is Nebraska's leading scorer and rebounder, nearly averaging a double-double with 19.4 points and 9.2 rebounds in just 24.0 minutes per game. NU's top returning scorer (14.6 ppg) and rebounder (6.6 rpg) from a year ago, Hooper's freshman season production came in 29.3 minutes per contest.
Hooper produced back-to-back double-doubles against Mississippi Valley State and No. 23 USC. She had 22 points and a career-high-tying 13 rebounds for her fifth career double-double against the Trojans. She poured in 25 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in just 19 minutes in a win over MVSU on Nov. 15. She also buried five three-pointers and tied a career high with three blocked shots. Hooper added her third 20-point scoring performance of the season 21 points and a team-high eight rebounds in a win at Florida A&M Nov. 25.
Overall, Hooper has scored in double figures in 30 of 36 career games, including nine 20-point scoring performances. She produced one of the best performances by a freshman in school history with her 31-point, eight-rebound effort in just 26 minutes at Missouri on Feb. 2, 2011, when she tied the Husker record with seven three-pointers. She had 28 points and six threes in the second half alone.
In her first season with the Huskers in 2010-11, Hooper made an instant impact by starting every game and leading the Huskers and ranking third among Big 12 freshmen in scoring with 14.6 points per game. She also led all Big 12 freshman in rebounding with 6.6 boards per contest to claim one of five spots on the Big 12 All-Freshman Team. She led NU with 67 three-pointers, which were the most ever by a Nebraska freshman, and ranked second among Big 12 freshmen. Among all Big 12 players, Hooper ranked 12th in scoring, 15th in rebounding and sixth in three-pointers with 2.2 per game.
Hooper, a two-time Nebraska High School Player of the Year (2008, 2010), owns five career double-doubles, including 25 points and a career-high 13 rebounds against Houston on Dec. 18, 2010 and 18 points and 10 boards against Louisville on Dec. 20, 2010. She produced her first career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds at Creighton on Dec. 8, 2010.
Hooper Hitting Threes at Record Rate
In addition to her impressive scoring and rebounding numbers, Jordan Hooper has hit three-pointers at a record-breaking rate since her arrival at Nebraska.
The 6-2 forward shattered the NU single-season freshman record with 67 threes (67-184, 36.4 percent) a year ago, and has already drained eight more threes through four games of 2011-12.
In 36 career games, Hooper has hit 77 career three-pointers and trails fifth-year senior Kaitlyn Burke (92) and junior Lindsey Moore (79) among active Huskers on the career list. Burke ranks eighth in school history on the NU career list. Hooper needs just three more threes to crack the Nebraska career top 10 (80, Cory Montgomery) and just five more to catch Brooke Schwartz (81) in ninth place.
With Hooper's ability to get hot from long range, a top 10 spot could be in jeopardy sooner rather than later. Last season, Hooper tied the Nebraska single-game record with seven three-pointers at Missouri on Feb. 2, 2011. She scored a career-high 31 points against the Tigers, including 28 on six threes in the second half alone.
Freshmen Enjoy Strong Starts Early in Season
Nebraska's six freshmen have all seen substantial playing time in the first five games this season. Overall, the six newcomers have combined for 178 points, 117 rebounds, 39 assists and 23 steals in 540 minutes through five games.
Four of the six freshmen have already scored double figures in a game, including a pair of double-figure scoring efforts from redshirt freshman Rebecca Woodberry. The 5-10 guard from Phoenix, Ariz., ranks third on the team in scoring and fourth in rebounding with 8.2 points and 4.8 rebounds through five games.
The freshmen have also produced a pair of double-figure rebounding efforts, with Emily Cady (4.8 ppg, 5.4 rpg) and Hailie Sample (3.0 ppg, 5.4 rpg) each grabbing 10 boards in the win over No. 23 USC. Cady and Sample are tied for second on the team in rebounding, while Woodberry is fourth.
Cady (2.2 apg), Sample (2.0 apg) and fellow true freshman Tear'a Laudermill (2.0 apg) also give the Huskers three of their top four assist marks early in the season. Laudermill also ranks fourth on the team in scoring (7.4 ppg), while tying for third on the squad in total steals (5). Laudermill scored 14 points in her career opener and added nine points in NU's win over Savannah State Nov. 21.
Laudermill is tied with fellow freshman guard Brandi Jeffery (5.6 ppg, 3.2 rpg) for third on the team in steals, trailing only Cady (6) and junior point guard Lindsey Moore (14).
In all, Nebraska's freshmen make up five of the Huskers' top eight scorers and three of NU's top four rebounders.
Redshirt freshman forward Katie Simon has contributed 6.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game, including 11 points and five boards in the win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Simon has been consistently productive off the bench, contributing at least four points in all five games, while playing less than 13 minutes per contest. She is also shooting 60.9 percent from the field, including 2-of-4 from three-point range.
True freshman guard Brandi Jeffery has pitched in 6.6 points and 2.4 rebounds per game.
Overall, the freshmen have averaged 35.6 points, 23.4 rebounds, 7.8 assists and 4.6 steals per game through five contests, including a win over a top 25 team. The six players they replaced on Nebraska's roster from a year ago combined to average just 25.8 points, 17.4 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 2.5 steals per game. Last year's team also went without a top-25 victory.
Burke Named Candidate for Lowe's Senior CLASS Award
Nebraska's Kaitlyn Burke was named one of 30 candidates nationally for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, honoring the nation's top all-around women's basketball student-athlete, on Friday, Nov. 4.
Burke, a 5-7 shooting guard for Coach Connie Yori's Huskers, is the most experienced member of the women's basketball team and one of the top all-around leaders on the Nebraska campus.
The fifth-year senior from North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, has played in 106 games for the Huskers since starting her career at NU in 2007-08. She has made 53 starts, including 29 starts a year ago when she averaged 6.3 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game. She has averaged 4.8 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists through five games in 2011-12.
Burke ranks No. 8 on Nebraska's career three-point list (92) and ranks near the Huskers' career top 20 in assists (214). She has climbed the NU career charts despite battling numerous injuries, including foot and knee injuries, multiple broken fingers on her shooting hand, and even a broken nose last season.
Burke has taken on an even greater leadership role off the court, serving as the 2011-12 President of Nebraska's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. In addition to her significant duties as SAAC President, Burke also finds time to coach a Special Olympics basketball team among numerous outreach activities.
The two-time first-team academic All-Big 12 selection is also a seven-time selection to the Big 12 Commissioner's Honor Roll. She carries a 3.541 grade-point average as an advertising and business administration major.
Burke's many talents preceded her to the University of Nebraska. Prior to becoming a Husker, Burke was a multi-sport standout at Argyle Secondary School in North Vancouver. Her final year before coming to Nebraska, she was one of the first Canadians to attend the National Elite Development Academy in Ontario. She was a member of the 2005 Canadian Cadet National Team and the Canadian Junior National Team in both 2006 and 2007.
Burke was a childhood actress in several feature films. She starred in Questar's Bear with Me (2000) and Ms. Bear (1997). She also appeared in Disney's Life-Size with Tyra Banks and Lindsay Lohan (2000). She also appeared in A Song from the Heart (1999) and National Lampoon's Dad's Week Off starring Henry Winkler (1997).
From the list of 30 candidates, a national media committee will select 10 finalists for the 2011-12 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in late January. Those 10 names will then be placed on the official ballot for a nationwide vote. Fan balloting will be coupled with votes from coaches and media to determine the recipient of the award.
To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities. Lowe's, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA, will announce the women's award winner during the 2012 NCAA Women's Final Four, which will be held April 1 and 3 in Denver.
Kelsey Griffin, a 2010 women's basketball All-American, is the only Husker student-athlete across all sports to be named a Lowe's Senior CLASS Award winner. Griffin claimed the honor following her All-America senior season, when she was also named Nebraska's Female Student-Athlete of the Year.
Huskers Setting Early Pace for Another Big 3FG Season
Nebraska's outside shooting was a strength for the Huskers in 2010-11. The Huskers hit 218-of-658 three-point attempts (33.1 percent) to average a school-record 7.0 threes per game.
In 2009-10, Nebraska hit a school-record 225 threes for a then-school-record average of 6.6 threes per game. Prior to 2009-10, the school-record for three-pointers made in a season was 173. Coach Connie Yori's Husker teams own the top eight three-point shooting seasons in school history.
Through five games, it looks like the 2011-12 Huskers have a chance to threaten the record-setting numbers from the past two seasons. Nebraska has averaged 8.0 threes per game in its first five contests of 2011-12, including 14-of-26 from beyond the arc against Mississippi Valley State. The 14 threes against the Devilettes marked the second-highest total in school history, trailing only NU's 17 threes against Vermont (17-33) in the 2010-11 season opener.
Nebraska opened 2011-12 with nine threes in a win over Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Last season, the Huskers hit seven or more threes in a game 17 times.
Huskers Sign Ohio High School Star in Early Period
Coach Connie Yori announced the signing of Ohio prep star Rachel Theriot to a National Letter of Intent during the early signing period on Wednesday, Nov. 9.
Theriot, a 6-0 point guard out of Midpark High School in Middleburg Heights, Ohio, is a two-time All-Ohio performer entering her senior season in 2011-12. Last season, Theriot helped Midpark to a 22-3 overall record and a Southwestern Conference title under Coach Stephanie Mentz. Theriot averaged 12.7 points, 9.3 assists, 4.9 rebounds, 3.3 steals and 1.3 blocks per game for the Meteors.
In addition to earning third-team All-Ohio Division I honors, she was named one of five players to the Cleveland Plain Dealer All-Star team in 2011. She was also a first-team All-SWC selection and a first-team Northeast Lakes All-District pick. Theriot was ranked as the No. 70 player overall by Collegiate Girls Basketball Report and No. 96 by the All-Star Girls Report. She was ranked as the No. 18 point guard in the nation by ESPN/HoopGurlz and has also ranked among ESPN's top 100 high school seniors in the nation.
Theriot played her first two high school seasons for the Walsh Jesuit Warriors for Coach Pete Zaccari. As a sophomore, she led Walsh Jesuit to the Ohio Division II state semifinals after averaging 13.8 points, 5.2 assists, 4.0 rebounds, 3.2 steals and 1.1 blocks per game. She led the Warriors to a 23-2 record. She hit 38 three-pointers on the year and was an 89 percent free throw shooter. As a freshman, Theriot averaged 11.8 points, 3.8 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 3.2 steals per game to help Walsh Jesuit to a 19-7 record.
Theriot played AAU ball for Sports City U and Coach Tom Jenkins. She earned a spot on the Pool A All-Star Team at the Windy City Classic (U.S. Junior National Championships).
Theriot chose Nebraska over Xavier, Louisville, Virginia Tech, Ohio State, Illinois, Michigan State, Dayton and Washington among others.
Yori Making Progress After Knee Surgery Complications
Nebraska women's basketball coach Connie Yori experienced a painful end to the offseason and start to the 2011-12 campaign. Complications to a seemingly routine arthroscopic knee surgery on Aug. 19, which included a staph infection and blood clot in her knee, sidelined Yori for several weeks.
The 2010 National Coach of the Year, who enters her 10th season at Nebraska in 2011-12, is gaining overall strength and mobility in her knee and has returned to the Husker program on a nearly full-time basis. She has spent the past two weeks in a nearly full-time role on the practice court with the Huskers, splitting time between a scooter and crutches.
"It is really unbelievable to think that I was in the hospital for the better part of September. It kind of feels like I lost a month of my life with the team," Yori said. "My family, friends and the people in our program have been so supportive."
Four days after the team's return from a successful 11-day summer tour to Scandinavia Aug. 5-15, Yori underwent arthroscopic surgery on her left knee on Aug. 19. She first injured the knee as a player in the early 1980's, but had not had a surgery on the knee since 1985.
Yori's recovery from her most recent surgery appeared to be going well, and she made a day-long appearance at the Fastbreakers Booster Club Husker Golf Scramble fund-raising event on Monday, Aug. 29. Her rehabilitation appeared to continue on track until mid-day on Wednesday, Aug. 31, when she began having intense knee pain. The pain continued to intensify until Monday, Sept. 5 (Labor Day) when she had a surgical wash to treat Staph infection in her knee.
Yori spent the following week in St. Elizabeth's Regional Medical Center in Lincoln before being released to her home on Sept. 12. Although she returned home, the pain continued to plague her and became so severe on Sept. 16 that she was rushed to the hospital by ambulance back to St. Elizabeth's.
Doctors discovered a blood clot in Yori's left knee and began treatment as soon as possible. Yori remained at St. Elizabeth's until Thursday, Sept. 22, when she moved to Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital.
She has spent the past eight weeks on the road to recovery. The pain is gradually subsiding in her knee, and she is gaining strength in her leg and the rest of her body from being nearly immobile for approximately three weeks. After a week of intense rehab at Madonna, Yori checked out and returned home in the afternoon on Friday, Sept. 30.
Yori made her way into the Devaney Center for the Huskers' first practice on Oct. 3, just for a few moments. She was in a wheelchair and on heavy pain medication, but she let the Huskers know she was working hard to join them at practice.
"I know a lot of people out there might hear this story and feel sorry for me, but I know there are many more people who are worse off than me," Yori said. "I'm lucky both the infection and the blood clot were focused in my knee area and didn't spread to other parts of my leg or body, or my condition would be a lot more serious."
Because of her nearly complete restriction of movement and heavy pain medications, Yori was unable to work or spend time recruiting for several weeks. Associate Head Coach Sunny Smallwood coordinated Nebraska's workout schedule and led the team in practice in Yori's absence. Graduate assistant manager Bryce Currie was activated to assume an on-court coaching role and the ability to recruit off-campus in place of Yori. Currie is in his second year with the Huskers after spending time at both Washington and Arizona State before coming to Nebraska.
"I am fortunate to have an experienced and talented staff," Yori said. "I have been in constant contact with our staff throughout this time, and our program is in good hands with Sunny Smallwood at the helm."
Huskers Officially Open Hendricks Training Complex Oct. 13
After 17 months of construction, the Hendricks Training Complex was officially dedicated Oct. 13, with more 200 invited guests and dignitaries attending the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
The 80,000-square foot facility adjacent to the Bob Devaney Sports Center is the new home for the men's and women's basketball programs, as well as the wrestling program. The two-level facility includes separate practice courts for the men's and women's basketball programs, as well as expanded locker rooms, player lounges, team rooms and offices.
"The completion of the Hendricks Training Complex is a compliment to those donors, season-ticket holders and fans who have supported our basketball programs for many years," NU Executive Associate Athletic Director Marc Boehm said. "The facility will help us attract top-tier talent and at the same time provide our student-athletes an experience that will help them reach their full potential.
"The Hendricks Training Complex, along with the new Haymarket Arena (scheduled to open in the fall of 2013), will give us one of the best combinations of facilities in the country and show our commitment to our basketball programs."
While the $18.7 million facility will house the basketball and wrestling programs, many of Nebraska's sports will benefit from the new facility, which includes a 5,000-square foot weight room, a completely renovated athletic training area that tripled the size of the previous area at the Devaney Center and a nutrition station similar to the one in the Osborne Complex.
The building is named for Tom and Mary Hendricks of Pipe Creek, Texas, and their children, Jennifer and Brandon, as they provided the lead gift in this project to benefit Husker student-athletes for years to come.
Throughout the facility, efforts have been made to give student-athletes the best training environment to succeed. Both the men's and women's basketball practice gyms are a court-and-half with six baskets, allowing additional work while the main floor is being used. The courts themselves are made with premium maple flooring with sleeper cushions that absorb shock to minimize injury. Both gyms have advanced acoustics as well as 103-inch plasma screens for breaking down film during practices.
The amenities inside the facility are top-of-the-line, as the main entrance features a two-story abstract net sculpture, as well as a granite fountain imported from China. The facility also features two video walls and 63 TVs.
The men's players lounge, named in honor of Neal and Jamie Hawks, features a 5x8-foot video wall, 400 inches of televisions, custom seating, a pool table and a kitchenette, while the women's lounge features three 65-inch televisions and a unique LED bubble wall. Both the men's and women's basketball programs have custom locker rooms with iPads built into the lockers, as well as custom back-lit displays. The wrestling locker room features 40 custom-built wooden lockers with back-lit displays and a lounge with a pair of 65-inch TVs and a kitchen.
The Hendricks Training Complex is the first project completed in the Expand Their Experience Campaign. For more information on the other facility projects, visit www.ExpandTheirExperience.com.
Young Huskers Grow On Scandinavian Summer Tour
The Huskers enjoyed an early start to the 2011-12 campaign by going 3-1 on an 11-day tour of Scandinavia, Aug. 5-15. The tour, which included stops in Stockholm, Sweden, Oslo, Norway and Copenhagen, Denmark, began with a loss to a talented Swedish National Team, before substantial winning margins over one Norwegian and one Danish club team. Nebraska concluded the trip with an impressive win over the Danish National Team on Aug. 14.
"We definitely got better, and that was exciting and encouraging to see," Nebraska Coach Connie Yori said. "Our freshmen are going to help us this year. I've been saying that since our first set of practices in June, but they have continued to get better and learn our system and work hard. All four of our true freshmen could play roles for us throughout the year. We also have a little bit better idea of the things they need to focus on now, so we can start working on them right away. It is definitely going to speed up their development process as players."
Emily Cady, a 6-2 freshman forward from Seward, Neb., drew praise from Yori throughout the team's 10 days of NCAA-allowable practices leading up to the trip. Cady showed that praise was deserved by averaging 13.8 points, 6.0 rebounds, a block and a steal during the four games in Europe.
Brandi Jeffery, a 5-7 guard from Vacherie, La., provided consistent production for the Huskers throughout the tour, averaging 9.0 points and 2.8 rebounds per game. The 2011 Louisiana High School Player of the Year and Parade All-American scored between eight and 10 points in all four games and grabbed at least one rebound in every contest.
Tear'a Laudermill, a 5-9 guard from Riverside, Calif., expanded her contributions during the trip. In the first two games on the tour, Laudermill had seven points, four rebounds, four assists and two steals combined. In the last two games in Denmark, Laudermill averaged 9.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.5 steals.
Hailie Sample, a 6-1 guard from Flower Mound, Texas, added 4.5 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists while providing a strong defensive presence on the wing for the Huskers.
In addition to the improvements of the true freshmen, Yori was also pleased with the increased production of sophomore Jordan Hooper. The 6-2 forward from Alliance, Neb., averaged 22.8 points, 10.0 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.0 block per game. She capped the tour with 33 points and eight rebounds in the win over the Danish National Team.
"Jordan has gotten better, there is no question about it," Yori said. "She has done a really good job of listening to the coaches after her freshman season and working hard on the weaknesses in her game. She is stronger, a better defender, more aggressive on both offense and defense, and she now has a couple more weapons in her offensive game."
In addition to watching her players grow on the court, Yori said she was impressed by the chemistry, unity and leadership that has developed among the Huskers.
"What a great trip for the players and staff for every reason," Yori said. "From a team standpoint, our players definitely grew closer and continued to develop some great team chemistry. The way they interacted with each other throughout the trip was exciting to see. They naturally bonded with everybody. There were no cliques or people moving in the same groups all the time. They just naturally and genuinely wanted to spend time with everybody. As a coach, that is really rewarding to see."
Moore Took on Iron Woman Role for Huskers
In addition to more than doubling her scoring numbers and increasing her rebounding, assists and three-point totals from 2009-10, Lindsey Moore also took on the role of an iron woman in the Husker lineup.
With injuries to nearly all of NU's guards, Moore hardly came off the floor as a sophomore. In fact, she played a Big 12-leading 37.5 minutes per game. In conference play, Moore averaged a Big 12-high 39.3 minutes per contest on her way to a school-record 1,164 total minutes. She went the distance in 16 games in 2010-11, including 12 regular-season Big 12 games and NU's lone contest in the Big 12 Tournament. Included in that list is a career-high 45 minutes in an overtime win over Kansas on Jan. 16. Over the last 25 games, Moore was on the floor for all but 29 minutes.
As a freshman, Moore led the Huskers in total minutes with 952 (34 games), an average of just 28.0 minutes per game, as Nebraska featured one of the deepest and most balanced lineups in Big 12 Conference history.
Moore's 1,164 total minutes eclipsed Jina Johansen's previous school record of 1,156 minutes played in 32 games (36.1 mpg) in 2004-05. Moore is just the third Husker in Coach Yori's first nine years at Nebraska to play 1,000 minutes in a season (also Kiera Hardy in 2004-05).
Big Ten Network to Provide More Exposure for Huskers
Over the past two seasons, Nebraska has enjoyed its best media exposure in school history with national and regional television appearances and frequent live video streams of its games on Huskers.com. In fact, last season the Huskers had 26 games appear on either television or live video streams.
In 2011-12, Nebraska's exposure increases to another level with coverage provided by the Big Ten Network (BTN), BTN2Go.com and BTN.com.
Nebraska heads into the 2011-12 season with the possibility of all 29 of its regular-season games appearing either on TV or live video stream. The only game in question is a road game at Georgia Tech (Nov. 30).
Every Nebraska home game will be available on either BTN or BTN.com, while every Big Ten Conference regular-season contest also will be available on BTN or BTN.com.
Nebraska will appear a minimum of five times (Creighton, Dec. 8; at Iowa, Jan. 8; at Ohio State, Jan. 19; Minnesota, Jan. 22 and Feb. 13) on the Big Ten Network, which reaches nearly 80 million homes nationwide. The Huskers will also battle South Dakota State (Dec. 21) in a game televised by Nebraska Educational Television (NET) that also will be available on a subscription-basis on BTN.com.
For a complete television and live-stream listing, visit Huskers.com. Fans can subscribe to BTN.com by visiting http://video.btn.com/allaccess. A yearly subscription for all Nebraska events on BTN.com is just $79.95. Fans can gain access to every Big Ten event stream for just $119.95 per year. Monthly subscriptions are also available.
Due to changes in the television rights policies brought about by Nebraska's shift to the Big Ten Conference, none of Nebraska's regular-season games will be available on HuskersNside.
Husker Sports Network Features new Lincoln Flagship
Nebraska women's basketball games will be heard on the new flagship station in Lincoln - B107.3 FM-KBBK. The strong FM station is the same station that has carried Husker volleyball for the past several seasons and provides fans of Nebraska women's sports with a consistent home for the Huskers.
Women's basketball fans can continue to listen to the Huskers in the Omaha area on Twister 93.3 FM-KTWI. The Husker Sports Network is in its 17th season of producing and marketing the live broadcasts of University of Nebraska women's basketball. Women's basketball play-by-play announcer Matt Coatney and color commentator Jeff Griesch enter their 11th year together as the Huskers' broadcast team.
In addition to the more than 20 stations that carry Nebraska women's basketball games during the season, every game can be heard for free worldwide on Huskers.com.
Fastbreakers Set Dates for Pregame Backboard Events
The Fastbreakers Nebraska Women's Basketball Booster Club has set the dates for three Backboard Events during the 2011-12 season. Fastbreakers can make their plans now to attend this season's Backboard Events with the Huskers at the Coaches Club in the southeast corner of the upper concourse at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
Nebraska's Backboard Events tipped off Nov. 18 at 5:30 p.m., prior to the Huskers' 68-50 win over No. 23 USC.
The Fastbreakers and the Huskers Athletic Fund host the second Backboard Event of the year prior to Nebraska's Big Ten Conference clash with Penn State on Sunday, Jan. 15. The Lady Lions were one of the top teams in the Big Ten last season and advanced to the 2011 NCAA Tournament. The luncheon is set to begin at 12:30 p.m., with tip-off set for 2:05 p.m.
The Backboard Events conclude in 2011-12 when Nebraska tangles with Wisconsin on Sunday, Feb. 19. The luncheon is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m., with tip-off set for 1 p.m. The date with the Badgers is also scheduled to be Nebraska's "Play4Kay" game (previously Think Pink / Pink Zone) as the WBCA's cancer awareness game.
Each luncheon is scheduled to begin 90 minutes prior to tip-off of each game and will feature a speaker from the women's basketball staff. The cost of each luncheon is $15 per person, and spots at each luncheon must be reserved in advance, either on-line at www.Huskers.com/donate, by calling the Huskers Athletic Fund at (402) 472-2367 or by mail to the Huskers Athletic Fund at One Memorial Stadium, P.O. Box 880154, Lincoln, NE 68588-0154. The mail-in form is available on the Huskers.com women's basketball home page by clicking on "Backboard Events" in the right side menu. Full menu details and payment information for each event is included on the form. Please make checks payable to the Huskers Athletic Fund.
Nebraska's History of Success at Home
The Huskers opened the 2011-12 season with a perfect 4-0 home stand at the Bob Devaney Sports Center. Since the Devaney Center opened in 1976-77, the Huskers are 366-123 (.748) in games played in the arena, including 136-82 (.624) in conference games. Since 2003-04, NU is 102-27 (.791) at the Devaney Center.
NU has posted double-figure home victory totals in seven consecutive seasons, including a perfect 16-0 mark in 2009-10. The Huskers stretched their home winning streak to 28 games with a win over Florida A&M on Jan. 2. Amazingly, 24 of NU's final 25 wins in the streak were by double digits. No. 19 Oklahoma ended NU's second-longest home streak in school history at 28 games, just one game shy of the NU record. NU was 11-4 at home in 2010-11.
Big Red Fans Come Out in Droves at Devaney
After setting a school single-season attendance record in 2009-10, Nebraska continued to rank among the nation's top teams in average home attendance with 4,333 fans per game over 16 home contests in 2010-11. NU ranked 22nd nationally in average home attendance at the close of the regular season.
Nebraska has regularly ranked among the top 30 teams nationally in average home attendance over the past 15 years. Husker fans flocked to the Bob Devaney Sports Center in record numbers in 2009-10, averaging a school-record 7,390 fans per game to rank seventh nationally. NU's Big 12 attendance was spectacular, averaging a Big 12-best 11,383 fans per game. Nebraska drew seven consecutive crowds of more than 10,000 to the Devaney Center to end the season, beginning with a then-school-record 13,303 fans for Nebraska's win over Kansas State on Jan. 23 - the 16th-largest crowd in the nation in 2009-10 (including NCAA Tournament play).
Nebraska smashed that record against Missouri Feb. 27, posting the first sellout in school history with 13,595 fans. The NU-MU game featured the largest regular-season crowd in the nation in 2009-10 that did not involve Connecticut or Tennessee.
Over the last seven home games, the Huskers attracted an average of 11,989 fans per game to the Devaney Center. NU's previous single-season average home attendance record was 5,000 fans per game in 1998-99.
Nebraska entered the 2009-10 season with 1,424 season ticket holders. During a special March Madness season ticket promotion at the end of 2010, the Huskers sold more than 1,100 new season tickets for 2010-11, pushing NU's season ticket base beyond 2,500 for the first time in history.
Huskers Played One of Nation's Top Schedules in 2010-11
Nebraska has consistently played one of the nation's top 30 schedules over the past five years, and the 2010-11 season was no different. Nebraska's strength of schedule ranked No. 29 nationally according to CollegeRPI.com. The Huskers finished No. 101 overall in the official NCAA RPI at the end of 2010-11.
The Huskers produced a pair of wins over top 25 RPI teams, including victories over 2011 ACC regular-season champion and No. 12 RPI Miami and RPI No. 24 Texas Tech. NU notched four other top-100 RPI wins, including victories over Kansas (71), Creighton (75), Missouri (80) and Saint Mary's (94).
In addition to games against the Big 12 champion and ACC champion, the Huskers also dropped narrow decisions on neutral courts to Conference USA champion Houston and Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference champion Marist. Houston ran to its best season in school history and joined the AP Top 25 at the end of the regular season, while Marist had its school-record winning streak snapped in the NCAA Tournament second round by Stanford. The Red Foxes also closed the regular season in the top 25.
Nebraska played 21 games against top 100 RPI teams. NU played 14 games against 2011 NCAA Tournament teams, with Baylor, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Miami, Marist and Louisville all advancing to at least the NCAA second round. The Huskers also played seven games against Postseason WNIT teams and one game against a WBI postseason tournament (Northern Colorado). Overall, 22 of Nebraska's 31 games came against postseason qualifiers.
Nebraska Owns Success Against Top 25 Foes
Nebraska has made a habit of knocking off top-25 opponents during Connie Yori's 10 seasons at the helm. In fact, the Huskers' win over No. 23 USC on Nov. 18 marked Nebraska's 21st win over an AP Top 25 foe under Yori.
Although the Huskers went without a top-25 win in 2010-11, the win over the Women of Troy marked a second straight win over a top-25 team from Los Angeles.Nebraska's 83-70 win over No. 22 UCLA in the second round of the 2010 NCAA Tournament marked the Huskers' 20th win over an AP Top 25 foe during Yori's tenure, including their eighth in 2009-10.
NU's 21-point win over No. 10 Oklahoma State on Feb. 3, 2010 was the Huskers' fifth against a top-10 opponent. Before Yori's arrival, Nebraska had beaten just one top-10 opponent in school history.
Nebraska's three top-10 wins in 2009-10 matched NU's all-time total in 35 seasons.
NU's win at No. 9 Baylor on Jan. 17, 2010, marked the Huskers' first victory against a top-25 team in a true road game under Yori. It was also the Huskers' first-ever true road win over a top-10 opponent.
The Huskers posted six wins over AP Top 15 teams (No. 5 LSU, No. 9 Baylor, No. 10 Oklahoma State, No. 11 Oklahoma, No. 12 Texas A&M, No. 13 Iowa State) in 2009-10, including three wins over top-10 foes.
The Huskers added a road win over final AP No. 16 Iowa State on Jan. 9, in Ames, while also claiming road wins over previously ranked clubs at Vermont (AP No. 24, Jan. 18), Miami (AP No. 25, Jan. 11), Kansas (as high as No. 18, first nine weeks AP). The Jayhawks, Catamounts and Hurricanes were unranked when they played the Huskers.
The highest-ranked team Nebraska has ever defeated was the 2004-05 Baylor team that went on to win the national title. NU outlasted No. 2 BU, 103-99 in triple overtime on Jan. 12, 2005. The Huskers' 21-point win over No. 10 OSU on Feb. 3, 2010, marked NU's largest victory margin ever over a top-10 team. Nebraska's 29-point win over No. 14 Iowa State in 2005 was NU's largest victory margin in history over a top-25 foe. Nebraska's 56-45 win over No. 15 Texas at the Devaney Center in 2008 also marked the lowest point total ever allowed by the Huskers against a ranked opponent. Before Yori's arrival at Nebraska in 2002-03, the Huskers had not defeated a top-10 team since a 73-67 win over No. 9 Iowa on Dec. 8, 1996, and had never beaten a top-five opponent.