Huskers at Texas Longhorns Report Card
Huskers lose 63-61. Box Score
The Huskers were very efficient on the offensive end, but fell just short (or long if you saw Jake's shot) at the end. Andrew Drevo was the man in this game with 23 points. He hit two huge 3-pointers late that put Nebraska up by as much as four points. A change in the lineup may have helped in this game. Nate Johnson went back to the bench with Charles Richardson regaining his starting position. This allows for more minutes for the bench and utilizes that depth a little bit more. The key players were fresh at the end and almost led to a huge upset win in Austin. One minor positive that may be overshadowed by Drevo's performance, is John Turek's second half results. He has struggled in past games against quality opponents, but something hit him and he became much more aggressive. That play netted him 10 points with four from the free throw line. If he does this for a complete game without fouling out, then the Turek/Drevo frontcourt will be that much better.
Best: Andrew Drevo - 8-14 FG, 5-7 from 3-point for 23 points. A great job by Andrew in this game. Unlike last year, "Threevo" did not need to force up 20 shots and play 38 minutes to get his points. He was over 50% and only played 30 minutes in this game.
Worst: Brian Conklin - 2-5 FG, 2-5 from 3-point for 6 points. Yes, Conk did hit two 3's, but his other three attempts were wide open. The last chance was with 20 seconds left and would have put the Huskers up by three. Brian ends up in this spot mostly because of past success when shooting wide open 3's. He will hit those shots next game!
Texas came into this game with the top scoring offense in the country with 90 points per game. Nebraska held them 27 points below that average, so it was a great job by the Huskers. The Longhorns' leading scorer, P.J. Tucker, was held to two points and Brandon Mouton was limited as well with five points. The Texas victory came from two main sources, Kenny Taylor and Royal Ivey, who had 13 points each. Taylor kept Texas afloat with four very big 3-pointers. Ivey hit the game-winner with 2.3 seconds left as he fell away from 16 feet with Corey Simms' hand right in his face. It was simply a great shot by a very talented player. Only thing that could be corrected is the number of turnovers forced. Texas only committed five, but on the bright side, Nebraska held Texas to just 39% shooting.
Best: Team Defense - Another tremendous effort by the Huskers with a special acknowledgment for Corey Simms, who shut down Brandon Mouton although he only played 17 minutes. Mouton was the main reason Texas dominated Nebraska last year in Lincoln.
Worst: Nobody - A few lapses always occur, but give Texas all of the credit for hitting some open shots as well as very difficult shots when needed.
Nebraska was outrebounded by 3, so it was a decent job, but they did have a large problem giving up offensive rebounds. Texas grabbed 17 on the offensive side, which helped the Longhorns shoot the ball 15 more times than the Huskers. There was nothing outside of the 'Horns offensive boarding that really affected the final outcome of the game in this department.
Best: Charles Richardson - 3 rebounds. Props to the little man for getting involved on the glass. The guards as a whole were much better in this one after struggling against CU.
Worst: John Turek - 3 rebounds with 1 offensive. John needs to find his groove on the boards again. He has not been the force recently that he knows he can be. Fouling out again never helps the final board totals.
Free Throw Shooting:A-
If you did not know, the Huskers are the Big 12's second-best free throw shooting team and continued that success in Austin. It was a 79% effort (11-of-14) that only needed more attempts for a higher grade. If John Turek figures things out consistently (see below), then this team can be even more productive from the line.
Best: John Turek - 4-5 FT. There you go John!! A light came on early in the second half for John and he became much more aggressive. He is shooting over 70% this year, so he needs to go up strong and get to the line much more often.
Worst: Nate Johnson - 1-2 FT. Even the best shooters miss every once in a while, but this distinction for Nate could have been avoided had he gotten to the line more than twice.
Well what do you know?! Maybe the season is not a total loss yet! It was a defeat, but nobody expected this game to be close, so this goes in the moral victory column. It keeps hope alive that maybe this team can put together a winning streak and possibly still make a run at the Big Dance. The Big 12 is very much up for grabs this year. The elite teams are below average and the lesser teams are much better, so anybody can beat anybody on a given night. This game should rebuild some of the confidence lost in the Iowa State and Colorado games. Look for Nate Johnson to come off of the bench for the remainder of the year barring injury and for John Turek to be more aggressive throughout entire games. This loss hurts, but there are so many positives that it is almost like a win.
Up Next: Baylor - Wednesday at 7:00 pm This should be an easy win, the only easy win in the Big 12. The Bears have struggled mightily all season, but recently received some good news. Seniors Terrance Thomas and R.T Guinn were reinstated this week after previously being declared academically ineligible. Thomas and Guinn were the two best players for Baylor when they were removed from the team, so Scott Drew gladly welcomed them back to his team. A third player, Henry Thomas, stepped up during the seniors' absence and provides another scoring option for Baylor. The Bears nearly pulled a huge upset in their last game against Texas Tech, so they can be dangerous. Unfortunately for BU, this game is on the road and Nebraska is desperate for their first conference win. On top of that, the Huskers have twice as much talent as Baylor, so all signs point to an easy win for Nebraska. The bench should see more quality minutes in preparation for a trip to Missouri next weekend.
Prediction: Huskers 80 Baylor 59