Gametime Primer: Jays vs. Nebraska

creighton @  nebraska

Saturday, November 29th, 7PM
Bob Devaney Sports Center

Radio: Big Sports 590 AM or Bigsports590.com
TV: Fox Sports Midwest (Omaha-Cox Ch. 47, Cox ESPN FC-Ch. 601, DirecTV Ch. 672),
Not available on Dish Network due to Channel Capacity

Creighton Game Notes | Nebraska Game Notes

Other Previews
P’Allen Stinnett Questionable for NU Game (OWH)
CU Must Rebound to Beat Huskers (OWH)
Doc Says Bluejays Like any Other Foe (OWH)
Huskers Hope Extra Effort Proves Contagious (LJS)

As we try to reign in the Jays fans from jumping off of a cliff after the loss to Arkansas-Little Rock on Tuesday night, the annual in-state rivalry game with Nebraska is upon us.  Here is what you need to know about Nebraska:

  • Nebraska is off to a 4-0 start to the season including a road game at TCU.  They have also played common Jays opponents Arkansas-Pine Bluff and potential opponent St. Louis.
  • The Huskers have only been allowing about 51 points a game.  However, they are being out rebounded about 2 rebounds a game.
  • The expected “big man” for Nebraska this season, Alex Chapman, has not even played in a game yet this season recovering from a knee injury.  The other tall guys are Chris Balham who can barely play 8 minutes a game and walk-on Ben Nelson.  One expected big man for this season Christopher Niemann was declared ineligible this year because he played for a team overseas that got paid.
  • Creighton is 8-1 in the last 9 regular season games against the Huskers and 3-1 in the last 4 trips to Lincoln

Pretty much if you are a Creighton fan or a resident of Nebraska, you know that this matchup is always one circled on the calendar for state bragging rights.  However, there has always been contention that this is really a rivalry due to the fact of the Nebraska Football/Creighton Basketball fan and the bandwagon fans due to the success of Creighton over the years.  Well, either way, this is a big game for both teams whether Doc Sadler likes to admit that or not.  This is also probably one of the few games that the Devaney Center actually is packed with fans.  From what was mentioned a couple weeks ago is that there were several tickets still available since Husker fans were trying to unload them.  I even know a few friends who have tickets to this game from the Husker season ticket holders because they weren’t able to use the tickets and tried to unload them to fellow Husker fans so they wouldn’t have to sell them to Creighton fan.  But in the end, they couldn’t get any Husker fan friends to take the tickets so they sold them to the Creighton fans.  Expect a lot of blue at the Devaney Center.

Now to the actual game itself.  Nebraska has been pretty successful with their defense to start the season and playing a lot of small ball because of their lack of height.  This means a few different things to be aware of.  1)  Each of the guys on the floor in all spots on Nebraska’s team on the floor may have the ability to shoot the 3.  2) Will Creighton be able to take advantage of it’s height to win the rebound battle?

The rebounding (or lack thereof) has been the talk of the season so far for the Jays.  After getting beat on the boards by 20, you would think the Jays would practice with helmets and shoulder pads to work on their rebounding.   However, I see the Jays loss at UALR as a bit of a wake-up call and a chance to hone in on what they need to do to be successful this season.  You have the crazies on the BlueJay Cafe that think the season is over, but it has barely begun.  The Arkansas-Little Rock game was a typical trap game and a good test win or lose.    If anything it will make them stronger.

Of course Nebraska get’s the “home court advantage” since the game is in Lincoln.  Two seasons ago, this was the opening home game for the Slingblade Sadler regime and the Jays cold shooting and the Huskers inspired play to give their new coach a key win to start things off in the right direction.

If the Jays are going to win in Lincoln, it will need to be a whole team effort.  The status of P’Allen Stinnett is unclear with not starting the other night, his injured wrist and total lack of motivation in Little Rock.  Expectations are high this season from the coaching staff and the fans for P’Allen and it will be interesting how he responds after facing some adversity.

This game could be a turning point for Creighton as to what type of team they want to be this season.  If history is any factor, these Jays should be fired up and ready to play and continue to strive to become a better team.  In the end, the Jays get a nice win on the road.    In a perfect situation, the Jays will run the Huskers out of the gym, but you know that probably won’t happen.

Prediction:  Jays 69, Nebraska 58

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