Hoops look ahead: Non-conference

Taking the approach it's never too early for basketball, BRR's Pat Howard looks at the Huskers' hardest non-conference games in 2013.


After earning a 2-seed in the 2013 NCAA Tournament, the Canes are in re-building mode as head coach Jim Larranaga looks to keep Miami atop the ACC again.

This could be a difficult task though as The U loses their best player, sophomore Shane Larkin, who took his talents to the NBA. Larranaga will also lose senior Kenny Kadji, who was second in points on the team behind Larkin and led the team in rebounds last season.

Recruiting has been a struggle for Miami the last two seasons, but Larranaga brings in two excellent scorers.

Davon Reed, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard from New Jersey is ranked as a four-star, and the No. 26 shooting guard in the country.

Not far behind him is another four-star, and the No. 28 shooting guard in the country, Deandre Burnett.

The Canes aren't expected to have the season that they had last year, but adding these two young scorers should help them in a quest for another ACC Championship.

Miami finished last season ranked 5/10 and lost in the Sweet Sixteen to Marquette, 71-61.


After struggling the last few years against in-state foe Creighton, Husker fans were sure hoping Blue Jays power forward Doug McDermott would bolt for the NBA. But the All-American decided to ride it out in Omaha, and will be back for his senior season. McDermott averaged 23 points per game and eight rebounds for the Blue Jays last season.

One area that should help the Huskers is the departure of Gregory Echenique. With a small front-court, Echenique was able to bust up the Nebraska interior with 12 points and 12 rebounds in 2012.

Creighton brings in five players in the 2013 recruiting class, one of which was ranked as a three-star. Toby Hegner, a 6-foot-10 power forward from Wisconsin, Darian Harris, a 6-foot-6 small forward from Arizona, and Zach Hanson, a 6-foot-9 power forward from South Dakota. The Blue Jays also bring in a pair of JUCO transfers, Devin Brooks and James Milliken.

Creighton finished last season ranked 21/22 and lost in the second round of the NCAA Tournament to Duke, 66-50.

Florida Gulf Coast

The Eagles will make their 2nd trip to Lincoln in three years as the Huskers will host FGCU in the opener of the Pinnacle Bank Arena.

The Eagles were one of the surprises of the NCAA Tournament in March, as they knocked off the 2-seed, Georgetown Hoyas.

In the second round, it was again the Eagles who would shock the country as they beat Jamal Franklin and the San Diego State Aztecs. They were not bounced from the tourney until they ran into in-state foe Florida in the Sweet Sixteen. FGCU returns all but one of their starters, Sherwood Brown, the five were famously known as "Dunk City".

One downside of the success of the Eagles post-season success was the departure of Andy Enfield, their head coach, who left for the the same position at Southern Cal.

Replacing Sherwood Brown is sure to be no easy task, but the athleticism of Thompson and Fieler will make the transition a little bit easier.

The Eagles finished NR/25 last season and lost in the Sweet Sixteen to the Florida Gators, 62-50.

*** Uploaded by Josh Harvey ***

Big Red Report Top Stories