Nebraska vs Creighton RecapNebraska won an ugly game Saturday against Creighton 54-52.  This game was a tale of two halves, in the first half NU struggled to make baskets even when they had shots close to the rim.  There were multiple blocks by Creighton in the first half leading to Kenny Lawson getting 4 blocks in the game for Creighton.  The other area in which NU really struggled in the first half was rebounding in the half court; Creighton used their size to get rebounds and end NU possessions.  Surprisingly, the Huskers were not sending extra men to the offensive glass and instead were focusing their attention on getting back on defense.

NU’s halftime point total of 18 was very disappointing, bordering on pathetic.  The team looked uninspired as they gave up drives to the hoop that were kicked out for open three pointers by Creighton.  The ability of Creighton to dribble drive and kick to open shooters has to be a worry for Doc.  If other teams can do that against the Huskers it will be a very long season.

The Huskers were able to stay in the game partly because Creighton really slowed the game down and did not attempt to run up and down the court with Nebraska.  It seems that Dana realized that his advantage was in the half court and attempted to have the game decided there.
In the second half the Huskers came with much more intensity on defense and stopped giving up drives to the hoop.  Creighton was still able to score some easy inside buckets on offensive rebounds, but there is not much that NU can do to stop those baskets in this or any other game.  It seems that Doc is conceding those points by playing the 5 guard lineup that he has decided to go with.

The defensive pressure was able to create some easy baskets and Paul Velander came alive from three point range and began bombing in three’s.  With the transition baskets and the makes from three NU was able to claw their way back into the game and take a 47-41 lead with 5 minutes to play.  During this run by Nebraska, Creighton was forced to use their timeouts to stay in the game and make adjustments.  They finally found something that worked, a zone that seemed to stifled Nebraska as the Huskers seemed satisfied with rotating the ball around the perimeter and then taking a contested jump shot with time expiring on the shot clock.

Creighton was able to hit some open shots and get some put backs for buckets to draw the game even in the final minutes, but Nebraska held on based on Steve Harley’s performance down the stretch.  As the game drew to the waning moments NU had a three point lead, but Dotzler came down and hit a three pointer to tie the game at 52.  But Harley, who led the Huskers with 18 points, had the answer for NU as he passed to Ade Dagunduro for the game winning basket with 2.7 seconds remaining in the game.

What we saw on Saturday is what we are going to get with this team.  Doc is going to go with Harley, Henry, Dagunduro, Anderson, Richardson, Miller, Velander and McCray with token minutes going to Balham.  It looks like this is the plan going forward for NU unless something crazy happens with Jorge Diaz the recruit from Puerto Rico who we are still waiting on the results of his English proficiency test.  With their quickness I don’t see defense being the problem with this team.  At one point on Saturday Miller was one on one down in the block and got a steal.  The quick hands from our guards are able to create turnovers down low when teams try to get the ball inside.  Were we will have troubles is scoring on the offensive end.  This will be especially true if we are not hitting the outside shots.  If we go cold from outside we could get beat by some very average to below average teams in conference.

Go Big Red - Corey

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