Bubble watch: Non-conference review

Big Red Report takes a look back at some of the Huskers' biggest non-conference games and how they might affect Nebraska.

As the national media takes notice of Nebraska's 14-10 record after upsetting Michigan State over the weekend, the general consensus is the Huskers are now a bubble team for the NCAA tournament.

With a favorable schedule down the stretch, it's not hard to imagine Nebraska with a 18-12 record heading into the Big Ten Championship.

An 18-12 record would likely put the Huskers smack in the middle of a big bubble discussion, meaning their resume would looked over pretty hard by the selection committee.

So Big Red Report wanted to catch Husker fans up on how some of the Huskers' non-conference opponents are playing and what their previous game with Nebraska might mean for Nebraska's chances.

Georgia (14-10, 8-4)

The Bulldogs have won four in a row and while they won't be catching No. 2 Florida anytime soon in the conference, currently they are in third place in the SEC, one game behind No. 18 Kentucky. Taking a look at the Bulldogs remaining schedule, it's pretty likely they will finish well enough to find themselves in the NIT. While that isn't necessarily anything to write home about, it should keep them in the Top 100 RPI.

Creighton (21-4, 11-2)

A 15-point loss to anyone doesn't look good, but the Huskers' loss to Creighton on their home court shouldn't bother anyone during Selection Sunday – especially considering the Blue Jays might crack the Top 10 by next week. To be honest, Nebraska played them tougher than No. 9 Villanova. The Blue Jays beat the Wildcats twice by 20+ points multiple times. As they keep on tacking on the wins, it makes Creighton look better, which actually helps Nebraska.

Florida Gulf Coast (17-10, 11-3)

The Eagles were a mess when they hit Lincoln for the opening game of the year – losing by 24 points to the Huskers. Recently though, FGCU has won seven out of their last nine games in Atlantic Sun conference play, meaning they are only one game out of first place. Beating a regular season conference champion in non-conference play always looks nice and the Eagles recent play seems to be helping the Huskers RPI.

UMass (20-5, 7-4)

After starting the season 16-1, the Minutemen have come back to life, going 4-4 in their last eight contests. They only play one team with a below .500 record down the stretch, meaning 3-2 or 2-3 looks very plausible. The Huskers lost by six early in the season to UM, but it's likely going to be a loss to a team with a Top 50 RPI and 22 to 24 wins on Selection Sunday.

Cincinnati (23-3, 12-1)

When the Huskers lost by 15 to Cincy in late December, the Bearcats were not even ranked. Nearly two months later, Mick Cronin has his team ranked No. 7 in the country and on their way to winning the American Conferences' inaugural season. With five remaining games on the schedule, it's very likely they get to at least 25 wins on the year. Once again, a very good loss on the Nebraska books.


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