By Randy York
It didn’t take Tim Miles long to bridge to one of his favorite messages Monday night when Jeff Culhane interviewed Nebraska’s new head basketball coach for half an hour on the Husker Sports Network.
After sharing conversation early in the interview, Miles talked about
the commitment required to play in the Big Ten Conference, and guess
which element he put right up there at the top?
“When you look at everything, it’s important
to know there are elements in place here to be successful,” he said,
“and I think the most important one is the intensity of the interest of
the fans. The fan base is phenomenal, and that’s good because at the end
of the day, this is a place where we can blow up men’s basketball …
everybody else has been successful … it’s our time!”
In his previous coaching stops, Miles has
been willing to take schedule cards and deliver pizzas to campus dorms.
He’s never been shy about reaching out to bring fans in. “I’m glad fans
have fun. That’s what they’re here for. That’s what it’s about,” he
said. “Fans can make a difference, especially your student fans. The
more successful you can be at home, the more confident guys get and the
harder they play. It’s a great environment. Basketball’s a fun sport to
watch. It’s a lot like hockey … only you score.”
Miles told Culhane that Nebraska’s program is
“a little bit flat right now” and added that the timing of his taking
the job “is better than maybe my predecessor.” Miles appreciates
Nebraska’s commitment to top-notch facilities and to hiring a quality
basketball staff and sees both as factors that will maximize recruiting.
“We want to get people fired up about basketball,” he said. “We need to
do our part, too. We need to win, and that goes without saying.”
Earlier Monday, when Miles ran into first-year NU baseball coach Darin Erstad,
conversation was quick. “You got those guys goin’,” Miles said. “Just
waitin’ for you to do the same,” Erstad replied. “He’s already got the
thumb on me,” Miles said of Erstad. “I like it!”
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Voices from Husker Nation
Our new coach is perceptive and has obviously done his homework. We had a good crowd when we upset
Indiana and followed that with a few more loud and proud crowds.
Unfortunately, we lost our mojo and never got it back. I know things
don’t happen overnight or even in a year or two, but I think our fans
will support a coach with vision and a strong determination to turn the
tide. Dave Johnson, Lincoln, Nebraska