The Kansas Jayhawks (17-1, 7-0) will look to stay perfect in conference play on Saturday when they travel to face the Nebraska Cornhuskers (10-8, 3-4) in Lincoln. Last season the Huskers handed Kansas a 74-55 defeat, marking perhaps the lowest point of Bill Self's first season at KU. Earlier this season, Barry Collier's team nearly beat Kansas at the buzzer at Allen Fieldhouse, but a last second three by Corey Simms just missed and KU prevailed 59-57.
Those two efforts by the Huskers have clearly caught the Jayhawks' attention -- just ask senior point guard Aaron Miles.
"We’ve gotta be juiced up. I mean, they're a team that's capable of beating us," Miles admitted. "They're a really good team. They played us down to the wire the last game here at home."
Lincoln native Nick Bahe remembers last year's loss at the Devaney Center and not just because he hit two three pointers and scored a career-high 6 points in front of his family. Bahe remembers the blowout Huskers win.
"We're going to learn from maybe not being ready to play last year here in Lincoln," Bahe said of the 19-point KU loss. "Plus, they had a shot that could have won the game here in Lawrence. So, we know Nebraska is a really good team and we can't take them lightly at all. Every game from here on out is going to be tough, especially this one."
Senior guard Michael Lee has also been impressed with the Huskers recent efforts against KU. The Portland native was especially surprised to see the Huskers poise in Lawrence earlier this year.
"They're a good team. They've got good players. Their bigs shoot really well. If I had to be impressed by something (it's that) they competed the whole way through. They never got rattled by the Fieldhouse or the pressure or nothing like that. They just played."
The Jayhawks know they'll have to bring a strong effort Saturday with lots of energy from the opening tip-off if they want to improve to 8-0 in conference play. Miles wants his team to play with the same fire they showed a week ago against Texas and in the 2nd half earlier this week versus Missouri.
"We've gotta come out with a lot of enthusiasm and a lot of energy like we've been doing for the most part the last few games," Miles said. "Because like you said, they're one of those teams that if it's close, who knows (what might happen)?"