The Nebraska men's basketball team visits an old stomping ground this week, as the Huskers head to Kansas City for the Hall of Fame Classic Powered by ShotTracker.
- James Palmer Jr. finished with a game-high 29 points, the second-highest total of his career and ninth career 20-point game.
- Isaac Copeland Jr. posted his fifth career double-double and fourth as a Husker with 18 points and 10 rebounds.
- Nebraska has scored 80 or more points in each of the first three games, the first time the Huskers have done that since the 1992-93 season.
- Tim Miles won his 100th game at Nebraska, becoming the fifth Husker coach to reach the milestone.
- With the win, Nebraska snapped a seven-game losing streak to Big East teams. It was also NU's first Gavitt Games win in three tries.
- Nebraska held Seton Hall to 2-of-16 shooting from 3-point range. Opponents are now 6-of-48 (12.5 percent) from beyond the arc this season.
- Nebraska's games at the Sprint Center this week are the program's first since the 2011 Big 12 Tournament.
- While Nebraska makes its debut in the Hall of Fame Classic, three members of the program have played or coached in the Sprint Center. NU assistant Armon Gates was on the Northwestern staff for the 2015 Hall of Fame Classic, while Head Coach Tim Miles brought his Colorado State team to play Kansas in the Sprint Center in 2010. CSU's starting point guard that day was current Husker graduate manager Dorian Green.
- The Huskers are bidding for their third 4-0 start under Miles with the others coming in 2012-13 and 2016-17.
- With a win on Monday, Tim Miles will match Doc Sadler for fourth on Nebraska's career victories list with 101.
- Each student-athlete will wear a ShotTracker sensor, and games will be played with a ShotTracker-enabled Wilson basketball. ShotTracker teamed up with Wilson Sporting Goods to ensure an embedded smart sensor will be undetectable in game play.
- Via the ShotTracker Team and Fan apps, ShotTracker’s technology will provide a wide array of resources to coaches, players and fans alike, including interactive shot charts, real-time lineup efficiencies and possession-based statistics. ShotTracker will also offer live analytics integration into Hall of Fame Classic telecasts on the ESPN networks, creating a never-before-seen experience for viewers at home.
- Although it is early in the season, Nebraska is third nationally in scoring defense (43.0 ppg), second in field goal defense (.268), first in 3-point defense (.125) and 12th in blocked shots (7.3 bpg).
- Nebraska has not allowed an opponent to shoot over 50 percent in 29 straight games dating back to last season, including 12 straight foes held to under 50 percent shooting.
- Under Miles, the Huskers are 46-5 (.902) when holding opponents under 60 points.
- NU has limited all three opponents to under 0.85 points per possession. Mississippi Valley State and Southeastern Louisiana both were held to 0.47 points per possession, the lowest number in Tim Miles' seven years.
- It is only the third time in the last 15 seasons that Nebraska returns at least 70 percent of its scoring from the previous season.
- Nebraska's 3,432 returning points ranks 13th nationally entering the 2018-19 season. Among Big Ten programs, only Iowa, which has 4,246 returning points, has more points returning than the Big Red.
- Entering the season, Nebraska's returnees have combined for 160 career starts for the Big Red and 214 games at the Division I level. Copeland (49 starts at Georgetown) and Palmer (five starts at Miami) both cracked the starting lineups at their previous schools before coming to Nebraska.
- He is first or second on the Huskers in scoring (first), blocks (first), assists (second) and steals (second).
- Palmer has scored his points in bunches with three halves of at least 15 points in Nebraska's first three games. He had 15 points by halftime of each of the first two games while he had 18 second-half points against Seton Hall.
- Palmer has become a more efficient playmaker, raising his assist-to-turnover rate from 1.38-to-1 last year to 3.67-to-1 in 2018-19.
- Palmer has shown the ability to get to the free throw line often, as he is second nationallly in both free throws made and attempted through Thursday's games. In fact, Palmer has been to the line (37) almost as many times as NU's first three opponents (40).
- Palmer has reached double figures in 34 of 36 career games at Nebraska, including each of the last 17 dating back to Jan. 15, 2018.
- Palmer averaged 18.8 points per game in Big Ten play last year, which is the highest average in conference play since Aleks Maric averaged 18.9 ppg in 2006-07. It is also the most by a returning Big Ten player since Tim Frazier in 2012-13.
- Palmer is one of only five returning power conference players who averaged 17.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg and 3.0 apg last season
- Watson enters Monday's game needing 27 points to tie Tai Webster for 26th place on NU's scoring list. He is also four steals away from matching Brandon Richardson for eighth place on NU's career chart.
- Watson's return marks the 10th time in program history that the Huskers had a returning 1,000-point scorer and the first since Shavon Shields in the 2015-16 campaign.
- With 1,090 points, Watson is one of two Huskers with 1,000 career points, as Isaac Copeland has 1,092 career points between his time at Georgetown and Nebraska. James Palmer Jr. is 111 points away from reaching 1,000 for his career.
- Watson has a career 2.12-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio and has more steals (141) than turnovers (134) in his career.
- Watson's older brother Demetri McCamey was an All-Big Ten guard at Illinois during the 2009-10 season.
- Watson is one of three alumni of St. Joseph to reach 1,000 points at Nebraska, joining Carl Hayes (1,136, 1990-92) and Clifford Scales (1,136, 1988-91). All three played for legendary high school coach Gene Pingatore, who is in his 50th year as coach at St. Joseph and has won over 1,000 games at the school.
- Copeland collected his fifth career double-double against the Pirates, as he had one during his redshirt year (2016-17) and three in 2017-18.
- He has nine career 20-point games (5 at Nebraska, 4 at Georgetown), including a pair of 30-point games. Copeland had 30 points on 12-of-14 shooting against North Dakota last year and a career-high 32-point night against Marquette during his sophomore year at Georgetown.
- A top-20 recruit coming out of high school, his 2014 Brewster Academy team also featured Donovan Mitchell (Utah), Devonte' Graham (Charlotte) and Jonah Bolden (Philadephia).
- Copeland earned his undergraduate degree in sociology last May and is working on his Master's Degree. He comes from a basketball family, as his father (Ike) played collegiately at East Carolina. As a senior, he helped East Carolina make the NCAA Tournament.
- His dunk on Wednesday against Seton Hall marked the fourth time he's had a top-10 play on SportsCenter during his career, including highlight dunks vs. Rutgers (2018) and at Indiana (2016).
- Nebraska is 15-4 since moving Roby into the starting lineup midway through Big Ten play last season. Roby has all four of his career double-doubles in that stretch.
- Nebraska has had at least six blocked shots in each of the first three games. Currently, four Huskers are averaging at least 1.0 block per game.
- Palmer blocked a career-high three shots in the win over MVSU on Nov. 6, while Isaac Copeland had three blocks in NU's win over Seton Hall on Nov. 14.
- The 5.5 blocks per game in 2017-18 were the highest total since the 1996-97 team blocked a school-record 6.1 shots per game.
- Nebraska returns a pair of players who averaged at least one block per game last year in Isaiah Roby (2.0 bpg) and Isaac Copeland (1.0 bpg). Roby’s 63 blocked shots were the most by a Husker since 2001.
- In Tim Miles' first six seasons, the Huskers returned a total of six double-figure scorers.
- With the return of junior Isaiah Roby, Nebraska brings back its top-four scorers for the first time since 2003-04.
- NU has won its last 14 games at home following the 80-67 win over Seton Hall on Nov. 14. The 14-game win streak is the longest among power conference schools and sixth-longest home win streak nationally. It is NU's longest home win streak since winning 14 straight to open the 2010-11 campaign.
- NU has posted a 62-24 (.721) record in Pinnacle Bank Arena since it opened in 2013. Against non-conference foes, NU is 34-7 in PBA (.829).
- Nebraska went 16-1 at Pinnacle Bank Arena in 2017-18 with the only loss coming in a one-point setback against then-No. 13 Kansas on Dec. 16. NU's .941 home winning percentage was the best since the 1982-83 campaign, while the 16 home wins was one shy of the school record.
- Nebraska went a perfect 9-0 at home in Big Ten play in 2017-18 and won its two Big Ten home games against ranked teams by an average of 15.0 points per game. NU's 9-0 mark - the only unbeaten mark in the Big Ten - marked the first time the Huskers went unbeaten in conference play at home since the 1965-66 season.
Nebraska freshman place-kicker Barret Pickering was named the Big Ten Co-Special Teams Player of the Week, the conference announced on Monday. It’s the second straight week a Husker has been honored by the conference after both senior running back Devine Ozigbo and freshman quarterback Adrian Martinez earned conference awards last week.
The weekly award is the first of Pickering’s career, while he became the first Husker to be named Special Teams Player of the Week since Sam Foltz in 2015. Pickering accounted for all of Nebraska’s points in the Huskers’ 9-6 victory over Michigan State on Saturday. The Birmingham, Ala., native made three field goals, all in the fourth quarter. Pickering hit a career-long, game-winning 47-yard field goal with 5:13 remaining in the fourth quarter. Pickering has made his last eight field goal attempts and is now 12-of-16 on the season.
Pickering shares the honor with Michigan’s kicker Jake Moody. Other Big Ten Players of the Week include Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins (Co-Offensive Player of the Week), Wisconsin’s Jonathan Taylor (Co-Offensive Player of the Week), Iowa’s A.J. Epenesa (Co-Defensive Player of the Week), Minnesota’s Blake Cashman (Co-Defensive Player of the Week) and Maryland’s Anthony McFarland (Freshman of the Week).
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - The sixth-ranked Nebraska volleyball team swept Indiana 25-13, 25-19, 25-19 in its final Big Ten road match of the season on Saturday night at University Gym.
The Huskers (22-6, 13-5 Big Ten) won their sixth straight match, hitting .388 on the night. Nebraska had 49 kills and just nine attacking errors, marking the third time in the last five matches the Huskers have committed fewer than 10 attacking errors after doing so just three times previously all season.
Mikaela Foecke paced the Big Red with 14 kills on .387 hitting. Lauren Stivrins had 11 kills without an error, hitting .524 for the match. Lexi Sun had eight kills with a .438 hitting percentage, her best as a Husker. She also had a match-high 16 digs and served two aces.
NU held Indiana (16-13, 7-11 Big Ten) to a .216 hitting percentage. Kenzie Maloney had 12 digs to lead the defensive effort, and Stivrins had four blocks. Callie Schwarzenbach had six kills, and Jazz Sweet and Capri Davis each had four kills with just one error each. Nicklin Hames had 39 assists in the win.
Indiana was led by Lexi Johnson's eight kills.
Set 1: Four different Huskers had kills to spark NU to a 7-4 lead, but Indiana came back to tie the set at 8-8. Stivrins posted a kill and a service ace to put NU back in front, 10-8, and Sun added an ace before Foecke hammered a kill for a 14-10 lead. Foecke tallied three more kills during a 5-0 run to increase the Husker lead to 20-11. Sun and Stivrins continued the onslaught of kills to make it 23-12, and the Huskers won 25-13, posting 16 kills on .438 hitting in the opening set. NU finished the set on a 14-3 run.
Set 2: Sun and Maloney served aces, and Schwarzenbach and Sweet tallied kills for a 5-3 Husker advantage early in the set. Indiana held a 10-9 lead before Schwarzenbach put down a left-handed kill and teamed up with Sweet for a block to make it 11-10 Huskers. With the score tied 13-13, Nebraska took charge with a 7-0 run. Sweet and Sun struck for back-to-back kills, and Hames dumped a shot to the corner before Sun dug a ball over for a kill. Foecke and Stivrins stuffed the next Hoosier attack, and Megan Miller served an ace. After Indiana hit into the net, Nebraska led 20-13 via the 7-0 run. The Huskers finished off the 25-19 win to take a 2-0 lead in the match.
Set 3: Nebraska started off strong, taking a 6-2 lead with kills from Davis, Schwarzenbach and Foecke. Back-to-back kills by Sun made it 10-5, but Indiana rattled off a 4-0 spurt to get within 10-9. Davis earned sideout for the Huskers, and Foecke and Stivrins combined for five kills and teamed up for a block for a 17-11 lead. The Huskers closed out the sweep with a 25-19 win.
Up Next: Nebraska finishes the regular season with two home matches next weekend. The Huskers host Ohio State on Friday and Maryland on Saturday, both at 7 p.m. on NET and the Husker Sports Network. Saturday's match will be Senior Day for Nebraska's three seniors - Mikaela Foecke, Kenzie Maloney and Brooke Smith.
Lincoln – Freshman Barret Pickering kicked three fourth-quarter field goals, including the game-winner with 5:13 remaining, and the Nebraska football team rallied for a 9-6 victory over Michigan State on Senior Day at Memorial Stadium.
Nebraska (4-7, 3-5 Big Ten Conference) closed its home season by winning its final four home games, and won a football game without scoring a touchdown for the first time since 1937, a 3-0 victory over Kansas State.
Senior running back Devine Ozigbo ran 18 times for 74 yards and surpassed 1,000 rushing yards for the season. Ozigbo is the first Husker to have a 1,000-yard rushing season since Ameer Abdullah in 2014.
Nebraska, facing the Big Ten Conference’s No. 1 rushing defense, finished with 103 rushing yards, including enough on its final series to run out the clock. Michigan State entered game the game allowed 76 rushing yards per game.
Nebraska held Michigan State (6-5, 4-4) to 289 yards of total offense, and limited redshirt freshman quarterback Rocky Lombardi to 15-of-41 passing for 146 yards. Senior safety Antonio Reed had seven tackles, including three for loss, two forced fumbles, two pass breakups and an interception.
Nebraska trailed 6-0 when a 19-yard kickoff return by freshman running back Maurice Washington and an ensuing personal foul penalty on Michigan State gave Nebraska the ball at its 45-yard line to begin its first scoring drive.
Freshman quarterback Adrian Martinez, who finished 16-of-37 passing for 145 yards, hit senior wide receiver Stanley Morgan Jr. for a 35-yard passing play to the Michigan State 20-yard line. Morgan caught four passes for 67 yards and became Nebraska’s all-time receptions leader with 182 career catches.
But the Huskers gained only 1 yard on their next three plays, all passes, setting up fourth-and-9. Pickering picked up the Huskers by making a 36-yard field goal, cutting the Michigan State lead to 6-3 with 11:07 remaining.
The Blackshirts came up huge on the Spartans’ ensuing series. Reed sacked Lombardi and forced a fumble that redshirted freshman defensive lineman Damion Daniels recovered at the Michigan State 20.
A 15-yard run by Ozigbo set the Huskers up first-and-goal, but Nebraska was unable to find the end zone and settled for Pickering’s 20-yard field goal. That tied the game, 6-6, with 8:07 remaining.
Reed then broke up a third-down pass on Michigan State’s next series, forcing a punt that gave Nebraska possession at their 47-yard line with 7:12 remaining. That set up Pickering’s 47-yard attempt to put Nebraska ahead for good.
Nebraska’s defense then withheld two Michigan State drives into Nebraska territory, the last one ending in an incomplete fourth-down pass.
Lombardi’s longest play was a 36-yard pass to running back Connor Heyward to the Nebraska 38-yard line on the Spartans’ second scoring drive of the game, in the third quarter.
Then on third-and-long, Lombardi hit wide receiver Darrell Stewart for an 11-yard gain to the 10-yard line. But the Blackshirts rose up held the Spartans out of the end zone, and Matt Coughlin hit a 26-yard field goal with 12:13 remaining in the game to extend Michigan State’s lead 6-0.
Michigan State led 3-0 at halftime.
To begin the game, Nebraska received the opening kickoff and gained one first down before punting. That ended a streak of six straight games in which the Huskers had scored a touchdown on their opening possession when receiving the ball to start the game.
Michigan State gained 50 yards on its first possession, with Heyward busting a 27-yard run up the middle to get the Spartans into Nebraska territory. They advanced to the 16 before senior safety Trey Neal stopped Heyward for no gain and senior linebacker Luke Gifford forced Lombardi into a third-down incompletion.
That set up a 34-yard field goal by Coughlin that gave Michigan State a 3-0 lead with 7:46 remaining in the first quarter.
Michigan State recovered its second fumble of the game with 13:49 in the second quarter and started at the 21 yard-line. But Nebraska’s defense stiffened and pushed the Spartans backward, and Coughlin’s 41-yard field goal attempt hit the left upright with 10:58 remaining before halftime.
The Huskers drove from their 23-yard line to the Michigan State 33, but Martinez’s fourth-down pass with the wind sailed too high to an open Morgan with 6:54 remaining and fell incomplete to end the drive.
Michigan State’s final drive of the first half ended when Reed intercepted a Hail Mary pass at the 1-yard line with 3 seconds remaining before halftime.
Nebraska closes the season Friday at Iowa. The game is scheduled for 11 AM on FOX.
Lincoln -- James Palmer Jr. scored 18 of his game-high 29 points in the second half, as No. 25 (Coaches) Nebraska improved to 3-0 on the season with a convincing 80-57 victory over Seton Hall Wednesday night in the Gavitt Tipoff Games.
Palmer shook off a slow start and shined in the second half, as his 3-pointer sparked the decisive 9-2 Husker run after Seton Hall pulled to within 44-42 with 13:32 remaining and helped build a nine-point lead, at 53-44, after a Thomas Allen 3-pointer.
Seton Hall got to within 57-48 after a Michael Nzei basket with just under 10 minute remaining, but could not cut into the Husker lead in the last 10 minutes, as Nebraska stretched out the margin in the final few minutes.
Behind the play of Palmer and fellow seniors Isaac Copeland Jr. (18 points, 10 rebounds) and Glynn Watson Jr. (14 points, eight assists), the Huskers outscored the Pirates 36-15 down the stretch to pick up their 14th straight win at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
Nebraska shot 59 percent in the second half, while holding the Pirates to 33 percent shooting after halftime. On the night, NU kept Seton Hall (1-1) to 36 percent shooting, including 2-of-16 from 3-point range.
Nebraska used 30 first-half points from Watson, Palmer and Copeland to take a 33-27 lead into the locker room.
The Huskers shot just 28 percent in the first half, but hit four 3-pointer and went 9-of-10 from the foul line in the opening 20 minutes of action.
The Huskers trailed in the early going before Watson keyed a 7-0 run, scoring five of his 10 first-half points in a 56 second spurt that gave NU a 12-7 lead.
Seton Hall, behind 15 first-half points from Myles Powell, used a 6-0 run to pull within 20-18 with 4:41 left in the half before Palmer got the Big Red on track. The senior wing scored nine of his 11 points in an 11-4 Husker run as Nebraska built its largest lead of the half at 31-22 with 2:16 before the break.
Nebraska scored the first four points of the second half to build a 37-27 lead after an Copeland putback slam with 18:31 left and led 44-36 before Seton Hall scored six straight points, the last of which was a Nzei basket to pull within 44-42 before Palmer’s 3-pointer triggered the win.
Powell led Seton Hall with 24 points, while Nzei added 13 and nine boards in a losing effort.
The Huskers return to action Monday night, as they take on Missouri State in the Hall of Fame Classic Powered by ShotTracker. Tipoff from the Sprint Center is set for 6 p.m. and the game will be carried on the Husker Sports Network and televised by ESPNU. Tickets are available for the matchup by visiting SprintCenter.com or Ticketmaster.com.
Lincoln, Neb. -- The Nebraska football team worked out in full pads for two hours on Wednesday inside the Hawks Championship Center.
Offensive Coordinator Troy Walters addressed the media after practice, crediting senior wide receiver Stanley Morgan Jr. for his hard work and perseverance this season. Morgan had just 15 catches and no touchdowns in his first three games, but through the last four games, he’s caught 32 passes, including six for touchdowns.
“[Stanley Morgan Jr. has] meant everything,” Walters said. “He’s kind of the standard of how we do things around here. He’s been excellent. He’s been awesome. [He] loves football. Every time he steps on the field, he’s passionate. He plays until the whistle. He sets the standard. We want all of the younger guys in that receiver room to watch him and to be like him. If you’re like him, you’re going to be successful, not only on the field but also off the field. Being a leader, setting the standards, setting the environment, the expectations, even when things were a little rocky and we weren’t playing as well, he never jumped shipped. He’s always had a positive attitude. I’m glad to see that his hard work and perseverance is paying off.”
“We’re going to call the game to win, but we know those guys have to get touches,” Walters said. “We know those guys have to make plays. If we’re doing what we’re supposed to do, those records will come because those guys are going to have to make plays. Our offense kind of goes through those three guys, but, we’re not going to get out of our normal play calling mode just to set records. It’ll come if we’re doing what we’re supposed to be doing.”
Walters discussed the excitement going into Saturday’s game and how they are ready to take on the challenge.
“We’re playing at a high level,” Walters said. “Their defense is playing at a high level. It’s probably the best defense we’ve played since No. 4 Michigan. So, it’ll be a challenge in front of us to really see where we are as an offense. The guys have embraced that. They have the number one run defense in the country. That’s going to be a challenge. Our offensive line, they’re taking that challenge. They’re excited. We can’t wait to go out there Saturday and see what happens.”
Walters also mentioned the status of wide receiver JD Spielman.
“He’s been limited,” Walters said. “He’s been day-to day. The good thing about JD [Spielman] is that he knows the offense in and out. So, he doesn’t need a whole lot of practice time to stay sharp. So, we’ll make sure he’s healthy and we’ll just see.”
Nebraska will continue preparations for Saturday’s game against Michigan State at Memorial Stadium. The game will serve as Senior Day. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. with television coverage provided by FOX.
LINCOLN, Neb. – The Nebraska volleyball program and Head Coach John Cook announced the signing of five student-athletes on Wednesday, the first day of the National Letter of Intent November signing period.
Three members of the Huskers’ signing class – outside hitter Madi Kubik, outside hitter Riley Zuhn and libero Kenzie Knuckles – are Under Armour First-Team All-Americans. Wisconsin and Stanford were the only other schools with three recruits on the first team.
Kubik, a 6-1 outside hitter from West Des Moines Valley High School in Iowa, is rated the No. 4 overall prospect by PrepVolleyball.com and won the gold medal at the 2018 NORCECA Women’s U20 Continental Championship while recording nine kills and two blocks in the championship match against Dominican Republic.
Zuhn is a 6-5 hitter from Fossil Ridge High School in Fort Collins, Colorado. Zuhn was a MaxPreps All-American as a sophomore after leading her school to a state title, and she is the first-ever NORCO club player to compete on the U.S. Youth National Team. Zuhn is rated the No. 32 overall prospect by PrepVolleyball.com.
Knuckles, a 5-8 libero recruit out of Yorktown High School in Indiana, played outside hitter in high school and led Yorktown to a 34-0 record as a senior and a Class 4A state title. Knuckles is ranked the No. 37 overall prospect and the No. 3 libero, and she was one of only 10 seniors named to the MaxPreps 2018 Midseason Player of the Year Watch List in October.
Two in-state prospects are also members of the Husker class. Lincoln Pius X libero Emma Gabel and Johnson-Brock middle blocker Fallon Stutheit will join the Huskers next season. The 5-7 Gabel was a PrepVolleyball.com Club All-American in 2018 and led Pius X to the Class A state final this season. She was also an AAU National Championship All-Tournament selection after leading VCN to a fifth-place finish in 2017. Stutheit owns the Nebraska Class D1 record for kills in a season with 539 and won three straight Class D1 state championships at Johnson-Brock. The 6-1 middle blocker is a two-time Lincoln Journal Star Super-State and Omaha World-Herald All-Nebraska first-team selection.
“We feel like we’ve put together a strong class that addresses what we will need to replace after this senior class of Mikaela Foecke, Kenzie Maloney and Brooke Smith graduates,” Cook said. “We have five highly talented, high-character individuals joining our program, and we’re excited to have two Nebraska girls joining our team next season. The returning players from this year’s team and this class will be our team for the next two years, so this is going to be a core group together, and we are going to expect this class to come in and challenge for important roles right away.”
Emma Gabel, 5-7, L, Lincoln, Neb. (Pius X) (VCNebraska)
• Attended Lincoln Pius X High School in Nebraska, helping the Thunderbolts reach the Class A state championship match as a senior in 2018
• Had 596 digs (5.7 per set), 24 service aces and 52 set assists as a senior
• Received Lincoln Journal Star Class A all-state honorable mention as a junior in 2017
• Played club volleyball for VCNebraska, which finished fifth in the AAU National Championships 16 Open Division in 2017
• Was named to the AAU National Championships All-Tournament Team in 2017 and was a PrepVolleyball.com Club All-American in 2018
• Also competed in track and field for the Thunderbolts
Coach Cook: “Emma will be a great addition to our back row. She is an elite passer and defender who reads the game well. We are excited to add another Nebraskan to our roster. Emma is someone we know will work hard and could have an immediate impact on our program. She comes from one of the best high school teams in the state and is a fierce competitor that will raise the level of our gym.”
Kenzie Knuckles, 5-8, L, Yorktown, Ind. (Yorktown)
• Played outside hitter at Yorktown High School in Indiana but will be a defensive specialist/libero for the Huskers
• Was named an Under Armour First-Team All-American in 2018
• Ranked the No. 37 overall prospect and the No. 3 libero by PrepVolleyball.com
• Was one of 10 seniors named to the MaxPreps 2018 Midseason Player of the Year Watch List
• Was an all-state performer each year of her high school career, leading Yorktown to a perfect 34-0 record as a senior with 4.2 kills per set and 3.9 digs per set
• Led Yorktown to the Indiana Class 4A state title in 2018, posting 14 kills and 10 digs in the state championship match
• Also won a Class 3A state title with Yorktown as a sophomore in 2016, recording 30 kills and 18 digs in the championship match
• Played beach volleyball instead of club volleyball in 2018 to improve her ball-handling and defensive skills
Coach Cook: “Kenzie is a phenomenal libero who plays for one of the best high school teams in the nation. She led her team to an undefeated season her senior year, and we are excited that she chose to be a Husker. We believe we’re getting one of the most talented players in the country in Kenzie and can’t wait to get her in a Nebraska jersey. She is a ball-control machine who has the potential to be on the court right away.”
Madi Kubik, 6-1, OH, West Des Moines, Iowa (Valley) (Iowa PowerPlex)
• Led Valley High school in West Des Moines, Iowa to a 41-4 record and the Class 5A state semifinals as a senior in 2018 with 5.16 kills per set on .382 hitting
• Competed on the U.S. Junior National Team, winning the gold medal at the 2018 NORCECA Women’s U20 Continental Championship while recording nine kills and two blocks in the championship match against Dominican Republic
• Was named an Under Armour First-Team All-American in 2018
• Ranked the No. 4 overall prospect by PrepVolleyball.com
• Averaged 5.5 kills per set as a junior in 2017, leading the Tigers to the Iowa Class 5A state championship match
• Named to the Des Moines Register’s All-Iowa Elite team following her junior season
• Helped her club team, Iowa PowerPlex, finish 19th at the Open qualifiers in 2018
• Named the Iowa Gatorade Player of the Year and the Iowa Class 5A Player of the Year in 2017
Coach Cook: “Madi is undoubtedly one of the best players in the country. Her experience with Team USA will be a very valuable addition to our program. With an outside (Mikaela Foecke) graduating after this season, Madi will have a chance to compete for a starting spot right away. She is a complete volleyball player and can play all six rotations. She is an exceptional passer as well as a force at the net and could contribute to the program in more ways than one.”
Fallon Stutheit, 6-1, MB, Johnson, Neb. (Johnson-Brock) (Nebraska One)
• Led Johnson-Brock High School - coached by her mother, Tera - to three Nebraska Class D1 state titles in her high school career
• As a senior in 2018, recorded 475 kills (5.1 per set) with a .415 hitting percentage
• Averaged 5.9 kills per set on .433 hitting as a junior in 2017
• Posted 19 kills and 16 digs in the Class D1 state championship match as a junior
• Set a Nebraska Class D1 state record with 539 kills in a season as a sophomore in 2016
• Was a two-time Lincoln Journal Star Super-State and Omaha World-Herald All-Nebraska first-team selection
• Played club volleyball for Nebraska One
• Also played basketball for the Eagles
Coach Cook: “One of the best middles in the state, Fallon comes to us from the small town of Johnson. She’s a bit undersized but can definitely hold her own at the net. She led her team to a state semifinal appearance at the state tournament playing all six rotations. Again, we love adding Nebraska kids to our roster and Fallon epitomizes a small-town Nebraska girl chasing her dreams of being a Husker.”
Riley Zuhn, 6-5, OH, Fort Collins, Colo. (Fossil Ridge) (NORCO)
• Attended Fossil Ridge High School in Colorado, helping the SaberCats reach the quarterfinals of the Colorado 5A state tournament
• Ranked the No. 32 overall prospect by PrepVolleyball.com and was named an Under Armour First-Team All-American in 2018
• Averaged 3.7 kills per set with a .421 hitting percentage as a senior
• Led Fossil Ridge to a Class 5A state title in 2016 as a sophomore with 3.5 kills per set on .381 hitting, earning MaxPreps Sophomore All-America honors
• Was a Colorado 5A all-state selection
• Played club volleyball for NORCO and became the first player from the NORCO program to compete on the U.S. Youth National Team
Coach Cook: “Riley has worked very hard to be a Husker. We admire her passion and drive to be great. She is a player that will without a doubt have a positive impact on the culture of our program with her hard work and dedication. She is a highly skilled attacker and blocker and plays for one of the best club teams in Colorado.”
Lincoln, Neb. -- The Nebraska football team worked out in full pads for just over two hours on Tuesday inside the Hawks Championship Center.
Defensive Coordinator Erik Chinander addressed the media following practice and he was asked what he has seen from a Michigan State offense that was held to six points last week against No. 8 Ohio State.
"Their injuries. They've lost some of their personnel,” Chinander said. “They're kind of finding out what's best for them with the people they have. I think they're going to find it out. Forecast says it's going to be cold and windy, so (they'll) probably get packed in and run the football and try to do what they're really good at and being physical and running the ball, so that's what we kind of expect right now."
Chinander also talked about the Spartans’ quarterback situation and how to prepare for seeing two quarterbacks on Saturday.
"With their two guys it's kind of what plays they run,” Chinander said. “I don't know if the skill set is completely different. I mean, they both do a good job running that offense. Their third guy is obviously a guy that we recruited at UCF that's more of a ‘wildcat’ guy. So I think you have a few things to prepare for but you kind of have to do some of it in the ‘good-on-good’ periods against our offense and some of it through the scout team work. I think there's a lot to prepare for not only that but a lot of different personnel groupings they present you with."
Chinander went on to comment on the seniors of the defense and if the game on Saturday will be a bittersweet one for him.
"Yeah I think it'll be bittersweet,” Chinander said. “Those guys have done a great job of helping transform the direction of the program, the culture of the program. Setting the stage for what's to come in the next few years. They understand that but it's going to be kind of bittersweet to have them go the last time without them experiencing what they've created. I hope they're back forever. I hope they feel like they can come back to any meeting, any practice, to any game and be a part of this team because they're always going to be a part of this team no matter where it goes.
“I think it's going to be really good in the future, and I hope they realize how big of a part of that they're going to have in that."
Chinander ended with expressing excitement to see his defense go up against another power offense like Michigan's.
"I think we went into that Michigan game and our guys kind of didn't know what we had yet,” Chinander said. “It was starting to build. I don't know if we were at the point where we thought were going to go win that football game. When the guys were at Ohio State, we were at the point where we were going to go win this football game, and I'm anxious to see how it'll carry over, just the attitude and the energy and where we start the game as opposed to where we started against Michigan. How we defend this thing right from the whistle, if we can shut it down a little bit and make them do some other things or if we're going to be in for a fist fight all game, but it's going to be exciting to watch."
Nebraska will continue preparations against to face off against Michigan State on senior day on Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. with television coverage provided by FOX.
The Nebraska men's basketball team faces an early-season test on Wednesday, as the Huskers host Seton Hall in the Gavitt Tipoff Games matchup. Tipoff from a sold-out Pinnacle Bank Arena is set for 6:30 p.m. Any returned tickets would be available at PBA beginning 90 minutes before tipoff.
ON THE LINE
- NU looks to help the Big Ten win the Gavitt Tipoff Games for the first time in the event's four-year existence. The two conferences have gone 4-4 in each of the last three seasons. NU is 0-2 in the Gavitt Games, but both games were on the road.
- A win for Nebraska would not only give NU a 3-0 record for the fourth time in seven seasons under Head Coach Tim Miles, but would also mark his 100th win at Nebraska. He would become the fifth Husker coach with 100 wins.
- A win would be Nebraska's 14th straight home victory dating back to last December, the longest win streak in the Big Ten. Nebraska is 40-9 in non-conference home games under Tim Miles.
- Although it is very early in the season Nebraska leads the nation in scoring defense (36.0 ppg), is second in field goal percentage defense (.226) and 3-point percentage defense (.125), 10th in turnovers forced (22 per game) and 12th in blocked shots (8.0 bpg).
- Nebraska has not allowed an opponent to shoot over 50 percent in 28 straight games dating back to last season, including 11 straight foes held to 50 percent shooting.
- Under Miles, the Huskers are 45-5 (.900) when holding opponents under 60 points.
- NU has limited both of its opponents to 0.47 points per possession, the lowest number in Tim Miles' seven years.
Nebraska senior outside hitter Mikaela Foecke was named the Big Ten Player of the Week on Monday, and setter Nicklin Hames was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week, the conference office announced.
Foecke averaged 5.00 kills per set on .413 hitting in wins at Iowa and No. 15 Michigan last week. She sparked the Huskers to the 3-1 comeback win at Michigan with 22 kills, eight digs and five blocks while hitting .465. Against Iowa, Foecke had 13 kills and eight digs and became the eighth Husker all-time to surpass 1,500 career kills. Foecke earned her third Big Ten Player of the Week honor this season and the fourth of her career.
Hames led the Huskers to a .333 hitting percentage in the win at Iowa with 30 assists and 17 digs. She then posted 52 assists and 18 digs in the 3-1 win at No. 15 Michigan. Hames averaged 11.71 assists per set and 5.00 digs per set. She has a team-high 20 double-doubles this season, including in the last 12 matches. It marks the second time this season Hames has been named freshman of the week.