Posted By: Sports
#16/#13 Nebraska Cornhuskers (21-5 Overall, 11-3 Big Ten)
Illinois Fighting Illini (9-18 Overall, 2-12 Big Ten)
Thursday, Feb. 27, 7 p.m. (Central)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (Lincoln, Neb.)
Tickets: Huskers.com / 1-800-8-BIG-RED
Radio: 25-Station IMG College Husker Sports Network (PBP-Matt Coatney; Analyst-Jeff Griesch)
107.3 FM KBBK-Lincoln; 93.3 FM KFFF-Omaha
Free Live Audio: Huskers.com
Live Premium Video: BTN.com All-Access (premium subscribers)
Special Event: Senior Night (Postgame Ceremony Honoring Jordan Hooper)
No. 16 Huskers Shoot for 16th Home Win, Honor Hooper on Senior Night
The No. 16 Nebraska women's basketball team tries to close out its regular-season home schedule with its ninth consecutive Big Ten win before honoring All-American Jordan Hooper on Senior Night against Illinois on Thursday in Lincoln.
Tip-off between the Huskers (21-5, 11-3 Big Ten) and Fighting Illini (9-18, 2-12 Big Ten) is set for 7 p.m. (CT) at Pinnacle Bank Arena, and tickets are available now at Huskers.com. Live radio coverage will be provided by the Husker Sports Network with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch calling the action for flagships B107.3 FM in Lincoln and The Wolf 93.3 FM in Omaha. A free live audio stream will be available on Huskers.com.
No live television will be available, but BTN.com All-Access will provide a premium video stream to subscribers.
The Huskers are coming off their most impressive win of the season with a 94-74 run past No. 8 Penn State at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Monday. Hooper, a two-time first-team All-Big Ten choice, notched her 11th double-double of the season and 37th of her career with 19 points and 12 rebounds to go along with a career-high-tying four assists. Hooper hit 4-of-6 three-pointers to push her Nebraska record total to 279 in her career, which ranks fifth in Big Ten history. The 6-2 senior from Alliance, Neb., also pushed her career scoring and rebound totals to 2,208 points and 1,054 rebounds, which both rank No. 2 in Husker history and No. 11 on the Big Ten all-time charts.
Junior Tear'a Laudermill also played a huge role in the Huskers' eighth straight win. The 5-9 guard from Riverside, Calif., tied a school record with seven threes on her way to a career-high 27 points. Sophomore guard Rachel Theriot also knocked down all three of her threes, as Hooper, Laudermill and Theriot combined for 14 of Nebraska's season-high 16 threes against Penn State.
Nebraska Cornhuskers (21-5, 11-3 Big Ten)
3 - Hailie Sample - 6-1 - Jr. - F - 6.3 ppg, 6.0 rpg
23 - Emily Cady - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 13.2 ppg, 9.2 rpg
35 - Jordan Hooper - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 20.1 ppg, 9.3 rpg
33 - Rachel Theriot - 6-0 - So. - G - 13.7 ppg, 3.5 rpg
1 - Tear'a Laudermill - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 11.3 ppg, 2.5 rpg
Off the Bench
13 - Brandi Jeffery - 5-7 - Jr. - G - 4.1 ppg, 2.1 rpg
22 - Allie Havers - 6-5 - Fr. - C - 3.1 ppg, 2.9 rpg
21 - Sadie Murren - 5-8 - So. - G - 2.9 ppg, 1.1 rpg
10 - Hannah Tvrdy - 5-9 - Fr. - G - 1.5 ppg, 0.4 rpg
11 - Esther Ramacieri - 5-8 - Fr. - G - 0.1 ppg, 0.5 rpg
Head Coach: Connie Yori (Creighton, 1986)
12th Season at NU (236-140); 24th Season Overall (431-280)
Illinois Fighting Illini (9-18, 2-12 Big Ten)
4 - Sarah Livingston - 6-2 - Fr. - C - 3.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg
2 - Taylor Gleason - 5-8 - Fr. - G - 3.7 ppg, 1.5 rpg
12 - Ashley McConnell - 5-9 - Fr. - G - 1.6 ppg, 0.5 rpg
22 - Ivory Crawford - 5-10 - Jr. - F - 14.6 ppg, 5.4 rpg
34 - Amber Moore - 5-11 - Sr. - G/F - 14.8 ppg, 4.9 rpg
Off the Bench
34 - Jacqui Grant - 6-3 - Fr. - F - 13.4 ppg, 6.0 rpg
0 - Sarah Hartwell - 5-10 - So. - F - 7.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg
5 - Nia Oden - 5-10 - Fr. - G/F - 2.5 ppg, 2.8 rpg
23 - Alexis Smith - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 7.8 ppg, 2.9 rpg
3 - Taylor Tuck - 6-0 - Jr. - C - 4.7 ppg, 2.3 rpg
1 - Mckenzie Piper - 6-0 - So. - G - 1.2 ppg, 0.9 rpg
Head Coach: Matt Bollant (Winona State, 1994)
Second Season at Illinois (28-32); 12th Season Overall (310-87)
Huskers to Honor Nebraska Native Hooper on Senior Night
Nebraska will honor two-time All-American and two-time first-team All-Big Ten selection Jordan Hooper in postgame Senior Night festivities on Thursday.
Hooper, a 6-2 forward from Alliance, Neb., is surging to the close of one of the finest careers in Husker history. This season, Hooper is averaging 20.1 points and 9.3 rebounds per game to rank in the top three in the Big Ten in both categories.
She is one of just three Huskers and five Big Ten players in history to produce 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in her career. She ranks No. 2 at Nebraska all-time in both points (2,208) and rebounds (1,054) and both of those numbers rank 11th in Big Ten history.
Hooper is Nebraska's career three-point leader with 279, which ranks No. 5 in Big Ten history, right behind Illinois senior Amber Moore's 285.
A candidate for every major national player-of-the-year award and the 2014 Senior CLASS Award, Hooper will start her 125th consecutive game on Thursday night against the Fighting Illini. She is the first senior in Nebraska history to lead the Huskers to three straight 20-win seasons, and is on track to lead the Huskers to their third straight NCAA Tournament. A psychology major, Hooper will earn her bachelor's degree from Nebraska in May.
Hooper will be joined on the court in postgame ceremonies by Nebraska graduate assistant manager Dominique Kelley, who is completing her second season on the Husker staff after completing her four-year playing career with the Big Red (2008-11). Kelley will earn her master's degree from Nebraska in May.
Huskers Lighting it up in Eight-Game Winning Streak
Nebraska has unleashed eight straight wins after rolling to a 94-74 victory over No. 8 Penn State on Monday night. The win over the Lady Lions marked Nebraska's first over a top-10 team in the history of Pinnacle Bank Arena and its second over a top-25 foe during the Huskers' winning streak.
Both of the Big Red's wins over ranked foes have been by 20 points, including a 76-56 win over the other team in the hunt for the Big Ten title, Michigan State on Feb. 8.
Nebraska's surge began with an 84-51 victory over Michigan in Game No. 19 on Jan. 29. That game included a pregame talk and jersey retirement for 2010 All-American and Senior CLASS Award winner Kelsey Griffin. After another double-digit win at Iowa (80-67, Feb. 1), the Huskers escaped from Wisconsin with a 71-70 overtime victory Feb. 5. After the rout of the Spartans on Feb. 8, the Huskers completed a sweep at Michigan (76-68, Feb. 13). NU rolled to another double-digit win over Indiana (76-61, Feb. 16) at Pinnacle Bank Arena, before rallying for a 67-59 victory at Ohio State Feb. 20.
Nebraska is 4-0 at home during the streak, winning by an average of 22 points, while scoring 82 points per game. The Huskers are shooting 50.6 percent from the field at home during the streak, including a staggering 45.5 percent from three-point range while averaging 10 threes per game.
The Huskers have dished out 89 assists (22.3 apg) while committing just 37 turnovers (9.3 pg), while posting a plus-five turnover margin per game. All four of the Big Red's home wins during the stretch have come against teams with 17 or more wins on the season.
Overall, NU has outscored the opposition 78.0-63.2 during the eight-game winning streak, while posting a plus-3.5 rebounding margin and a plus-3.4 turnover margin. The Huskers are shooting 48.2 percent from the field, 44.1 percent from three-point range and 79.5 percent at the free throw line. NU's assist-to-turnover ratio during the streak is 146-to-81 (1.8).
Last season, NU reeled off 10 straight wins starting with Game No. 19 at Minnesota (Jan. 20, 2012).
Huskers Notch History-Making Third Straight 20-Win Season
Nebraska has produced its third consecutive 20-win campaign for the first time in program history and 2013-14 Huskers are within striking distance of some of the top seasons in school history.
Coach Connie Yori is in the midst of leading the Huskers to the most successful era in school history. The 2013-14 Huskers are 21-5 overall and 11-3 in the Big Ten while riding an eight-game winning streak. It marks the third straight season that NU has won 10 or more Big Ten Conference games. The 2012-13 Nebraska squad earned its second NCAA Sweet 16 selection in the past four years, while rolling to 25 wins - the second-highest victory total in school history. The 2011-12 Huskers worked their way to 24 victories, which ranks as the third-highest win total in school history.
Nebraska, which has secured its sixth 20-win season in the past eight years, had managed only five 20-win seasons in the previous 26 years before Yori led the Huskers to 22 wins in 2006-07. It is NU's 15th 20-win season in the 39th full year of women's basketball as a varsity sport.
Nebraska owns four 20-win seasons in the last five years, which has included the three top victory totals in school history, including an NU-record 32 wins in 2009-10. Prior to Yori's arrival in 2002-03, NU's record for single-season wins was 23 (1978-79, 1979-80, 1992-93, 1997-98).
Huskers Claim Third Consecutive 10-Win Big Ten Campaign
Nebraska (11-3) has posted its third straight 10-win Big Ten season in its third year in the conference. Nebraska went 12-4 in 2013, after producing a 10-6 conference mark in its first Big Ten season in 2012.
With two games to play in the conference, the Huskers have joined Michigan State (11-3) and Penn State (12-3) across the 10-win mark for the third straight year.
The Spartans own the longest active streak of double-digit Big Ten wins, dating back 12 seasons to a six-win campaign in 2001-02. Penn State has produced four consecutive seasons with 10 or more wins.
Purdue owns four straight seasons with double-figure league wins after a victory against Wisconsin over the weekend to improve to a 10-5 mark. Purdue closes at home against Nebraska March 2.
Vote Hooper for Senior CLASS Award
Nebraska All-American Jordan Hooper was chosen as one of 10 finalists for the 2014 Senior CLASS Award, when selections were announced on Feb. 12.
Hooper, a 6-2 forward from Alliance, Neb., ranks second in Husker history in points, rebounds and double-doubles and is the school record holder with 279 three-pointers. She is also one of just five players in Big Ten history to achieve the combined milestones of 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds.
A candidate for the Wade, Naismith and Wooden National Player-of-the-Year awards, Hooper is trying to become the second Husker women's basketball player to win the Senior CLASS Award in the last five years, joining 2010 winner Kelsey Griffin.
The award recognizes outstanding commitment by a senior student-athlete in the areas of competition, character, the classroom and in the community. Fans can vote on the award once per day per device by visiting SeniorCLASSAward.com. Fan votes will join choices by media and coaches as the determining factors in selecting a winner, which will be announced at the NCAA Women's Final Four.
Husker fans can vote for Hooper now through March 24. As of Noon on Feb. 25, Hooper was leading the fan vote with more than 32.5 percent of the overall vote among the 10 candidates.
Huskers Hope to Continue Fabulous February in Big Ten
Nebraska has opened February with six straight wins, stretching its February winning streak to 15 games. NU's last February loss came at Michigan State on Feb. 23, 2012. Nebraska is 17-4 overall, including 8-2 at home and 9-2 on the road in February as a member of the Big Ten.
The Huskers, who carry an eight-game overall winning streak on the season, are 7-0 this February.
NCAA Announces Game Time Changes for Lincoln Regional
The NCAA announced two game time changes on Wednesday, Feb. 12, for Nebraska's NCAA Lincoln Regional semifinals at Pinnacle Bank Arena on March 29. Tip time for regional semifinal game one has moved to 3:30 p.m., while semifinal game has shifted to 6 p.m.
Those game times were previously announced as 5:30 and 8 p.m. and printed in various advertisements, season schedules and on the actual game tickets. Fans are encouraged to check Huskers.com for current information and any additional event changes before attending the games, March 29 and 31.
Husker Hot Shots - Nebraska's Starting Five
#35, Jordan Hooper, 6-2, Sr., F, Alliance, Neb. (20.1 ppg, 9.3 rpg)
• Senior All-American Jordan Hooper pushed her Nebraska career three-point record to 279 with 4-of-6 three-point shooting in Monday's win over No. 8 Penn State. Hooper, who ranks fifth in Big Ten career threes, trails Illinois senior Amber Moore (285) by six on the Big Ten career list.
• Hooper has hit more three-pointers (279) than any forward/center in Big Ten history. She is also the active leader by a forward/center in NCAA Division I and one of only two among the top 25 active shooters overall in Division I.
• Hooper was named one of 10 finalists for the 2014 Senior CLASS Award for women's basketball on Feb. 12. Fans can vote for Hooper daily at SeniorCLASSAward.com through March 24. Women's basketball All-American Kelsey Griffin won Nebraska's first-ever Senior CLASS Award across all sports in 2010. Volleyball All-American Gina Mancuso added an award in 2012.
• Hooper has averaged 22.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and 3.6 threes per game during NU's eight-game winning streak. She had 31 points and a season-high six three-pointers in the win over Indiana Feb. 16. It was Hooper's third 30-point game of the season and ninth of her career. Hooper ranks No. 2 at Nebraska in career points (2,208), trailing only 1993 Wade Trophy winner Karen Jennings (2,405) on the Husker list.
• Hooper ranks second on the Nebraska career rebound chart with 1,054. Janet Smith owns the NU career record with 1,280 rebounds.
• Hooper is the third Husker and fifth Big Ten player in history to reach the combined career milestones of 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds. She is one of five active NCAA Division I players to reach those marks.
• Hooper owns 37 career double-doubles, moving past 1993 Wade Trophy winner Karen Jennings into second on the NU all-time list with 19 points and 12 rebounds in NU's win over No. 8 Penn State on Monday. Hooper needs three double-doubles to tie Kelsey Griffin's school record of 40. Hooper and teammate Emily Cady (11) are the first Huskers to produce double-digit double-doubles in the same season.
• Hooper ranks No. 11 in Big Ten history with 2,208 points. She needs 43 points to catch Purdue's Shereka Wright (2001-04) in 10th.
• Hooper pulled down 12 rebounds against Penn State to increase her career total to 1,054 and pass Karisma Penn (Illinois, 2010-13) at No. 11 on the Big Ten's all-time list. Hooper needs 36 rebounds to catch Indiana's Whitney Thomas (2006-09) and join the conference's all-time top 10.
• Hooper ranks No. 8 nationally among all active NCAA Division I players with 2,208 career points. She ranks No. 3 in the Big Ten in scoring and No. 34 nationally with 20.1 points per game this season.
• Hooper ranks third in the Big Ten and 68th nationally with 9.3 rebounds per game. With 1,054 career rebounds, Hooper ranks No. 15 among all active NCAA Division I players.
• Hooper is expected to make her 125th consecutive start in Thursday's game against Illinois. Kelsey Griffin (2007-10) ranks second with 127, while Lindsey Moore (2010-13) owns Nebraska's career record with 132.
• Hooper has played more minutes than any forward or center in Nebraska history. She enters the Illinois game with 3,780 minutes played, which ranks fourth overall on the NU chart. Hooper needs to play 18 minutes to catch Nicole Kubik (3,798, 1997-00) in third. Karen Jennings ranks second among forwards/center in minutes played at NU with 3,369.
• With four assists against Penn State, Hooper increased her single-season high to 33. She has eight more than her freshman and sophomore seasons combined (25), and 11 more than she distributed in 2012-13 (22). She needs 14 more assists to match her career total entering this season.
• Hooper's 71 career blocked shots rank 11th in Nebraska history. She is second on the team with 14 this season.
• Hooper is tied for second among the Huskers with 27 steals this season.
• Hooper is one of only seven forward/centers among 42 regulars in the Big Ten Conference with a positive assist-to-turnover ratio (33-to-32). Nebraska is the only team with two interior forwards posting positive assist-to-turnover ratios, as Emiy Cady carries 81 assists against just 53 turnovers (1.5-to-1).
• Hooper has scored in double figures in 109 of her 124 career games, including 47 20-point performances. She owns nine career 30-point efforts, including 33 points and 14 boards against Utah State (Dec. 8), 31 points and six threes against Indiana (Feb. 16) and 30 points and 11 rebounds against ORU (Dec. 29) this season. She has grabbed double-digit rebounds 43 times, including 13 this year.
#23, Emily Cady, 6-2, Jr., F, Seward, Neb. (13.2 ppg, 9.2 rpg, 3.1 apg)
• One of the Big Ten's most versatile forwards, Emily Cady ranks fourth in the Big Ten with 9.2 rebounds per game, including 9.9 boards in conference games-only. She ranks 23rd overall in scoring (13.2 ppg), sixth in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.5-to-1), seventh in field goal percentage (.517), eighth in free throw percentage (.844) and 13th in assists (3.1 apg). In Big Ten games-only, Cady ranks third with her 1.9 assist-to-turnover ratio trailing only Husker point guard Rachel Theriot (2.8) and Iowa point guard Samantha Logic (2.3). Cady also ranks eighth in the league in assists (4.0 apg).
• Cady is tied for second in the Big Ten with teammate Jordan Hooper with 11 double-doubles on the season. Cady owns seven double-doubles in Big Ten play.
• Cady notched her seventh Big Ten double-double with 12 points and 13 rebounds in the win over Indiana on Feb. 16. She had 10 points and 11 rebounds at Wisconsin Feb. 5. Cady had 12 points and 10 rebounds at Northwestern Jan. 26, after scoring 13 points and grabbing a career-high-tying 16 rebounds against Purdue Jan. 19. That followed a season-high 23 points to go along with 10 rebounds and six assists in the win over Minnesota on Jan. 16. She had 19 points and 10 rebounds at Illinois to go along with 16 points and 12 boards at Michigan State.
• Cady owns 19 career double-doubles, which ranks eighth all-time at Nebraska. Cady needs two more double-doubles to catch Maurtice Ivy (1985-88) and Deb Powell (1982-85) in a tie for sixth with 21.
• Cady enters the Illinois game with 723 rebounds to rank ninth all-time at Nebraska. She needs 27 boards to catch Debra Powell (750, 1982-85) in eighth on the NU all-time list.
• Cady needs 23 points to become the 29th player in Nebraska history to score 1,000 in her career.
• The best passing forward in the Big Ten, Cady's 81 assists lead all conference forwards. Her 1.5-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio also leads all players in the conference at the position. In Big Ten play, her 1.9 assist-to-turnover ratio is better than 10 starting point guards in the conference.
• Cady and teammate Jordan Hooper are two of only seven forward/centers among 42 regulars in the Big Ten Conference with positive assist-to-turnover ratios. Nebraska is the only team with two interior forwards posting positive assist-to-turnover ratios.
• Cady, who owns 977 points, 723 rebounds, 198 assists and 105 steals, needs 23 points and two assists to become just the third player in Nebraska history with 1,000 points, 700 rebounds, 200 assists and 100 career steals, joining Maurtice Ivy and Anna DeForge.
• Cady ranks 10th in NU history with 81 career blocks. She needs seven more to catch Casey Leonhardt (88, 2000-01) in ninth on the Husker career chart. Only seven Huskers have 100 career blocks.
• No player in Husker history has 1,000 points, 900 rebounds, 200 assists, 100 steals and 100 blocks.
#33, Rachel Theriot, 6-0, So., G, Middleburg Heights, Ohio (13.7 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 6.5 apg)
• One of the best young point guards in the nation, Rachel Theriot is averaging 15.6 points and 7.4 assists in Big Ten play. She is averaging 13.7 points, 3.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists on the year.
• Theriot produced back-to-back 20-point efforts, including 26 points, a career-high-matching seven rebounds and four assists in a win at Ohio State Feb. 20. She also had 23 points, six boards, eight assists, two steals and one block in the win over Indiana Feb. 16.
• She notched another stellar effort with 17 points, including 3-of-3 shooting from three-point range, while adding eight assists in NU's win over No. 8 Penn State Feb. 24. It was her 19th double-figure scoring effort of the season and 26th of her career. She had a career-high 33 points in an overtime win over Minnesota (Jan. 16). She added 28 points at Utah (Nov. 15), when she also had seven rebounds.
• Theriot notched her first career double-double with 10 points and 11 assists against Michigan on Jan. 29. She added her second double-double with 10 points and 11 assists at Wisconsin Feb. 5. She just missed her third double-double with nine points and a career-high 12 assists in NU's 76-56 win over No. 24 Michigan State Feb. 8.
• During Nebraska's eight-game winning streak, Theriot is averaging 14.9 points, 4.0 rebounds and 8.0 assists with an impressive 4.0-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio (64-16).
• Over the last five games, Theriot is 8-for-10 from three-point range and a perfect 12-for-12 at the free throw line.
• Theriot enters the Illinois game with 170 assists to rank No. 3 on Nebraska's sophomore assist list. Meggan Yedsena owns the Nebraska sophomore record (195, 1991-92) while Lindsey Moore (183, 2010-11) carries the second-best assist total by a sophomore in school history.
• Theriot earned the first Big Ten Player-of-the-Week award of her career on Jan. 20, after averaging 26.0 points and 6.5 assists against Minnesota and Purdue. She produced a career-high 33 points along with nine assists without committing a turnover in an 88-85 OT win over Minnesota Jan. 16. She scored 21 points after halftime, including 17 in the second half to lead NU back from a 14-point deficit with 13:40 to play. Theriot added four in overtime, including two free throws with 14.9 seconds left to seal the win.
• Theriot ranks third in the Big Ten and 11th nationally with 6.5 assists per game, including 7.4 assists per game in Big Ten play. She has produced back-to-back 100-assist seasons and owns 271 in her career. She needs 34 more assists to crack Nebraska's career top 10 (Lis Brenden, 10th, 305, 1993-96).
• Theriot leads the Big Ten in overall assist-to-turnover ratio (2.5-to-1). Her 2.8-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio in Big Ten games also leads the conference.
• Theriot is tied for second among the Huskers with 27 steals on the season.
• Theriot has 356 points and 170 assists through 26 games. Last season, she had 211 points and 101 assists in 34 games, including 28 starts.
• In Big Ten play, Theriot leads the league with 39.3 minutes per game. She has played the full 45 minutes in both of NU's overtime wins in conference play, and the full 40 against Northwestern (Jan. 2), Purdue (Jan. 19), at Michigan (Feb. 13), and Indiana (Feb. 16), at Ohio State (Feb. 20). In the last six games, Theriot has played 239 minutes. She has played all but 10 minutes during the month of February.
#1, Tear'a Laudermill, 5-9, Jr., G, Riverside, Calif. (11.3 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.2 apg, 1.1 spg)
• Tear'a Laudermill is emerging as a rising star for the Huskers as a junior in Big Ten play. Over the last eight games, Laudermill has averaged 16 points and hit 51 percent (25-49) of her three-pointers.
• Laudermill erupted for a career-high 27 points, including a school-record-tying seven three-pointers in Nebraska's 94-74 win over No. 8 Penn State Feb. 24. She hit her first six threes in the first half and closed the night 7-of-10 to lead Nebraska to the best three-point shooting game (16-22, .727) in NCAA Division I this season.
• Laudermill has produced the first three 20-point performances of her career this February, after opening the month with 26 points on 9-of-12 shooting, including four threes in a win at Iowa Feb. 1. She added 21 points on five threes at Wisconsin Feb. 5.
• Over the past month (9 games), Laudermill has scored 146 points. In the first 17 games this season, she had 147.
• With 293 points this season, Laudermill needs just 13 more points to match her career total (61 games) entering 2013-14.
• In Big Ten play, Laudermill is averaging 13.7 points, 2.2 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.3 steals in 26.1 minutes per game. In 2012-13, she averaged 6.1 points and 1.7 rebounds in 17.5 minutes per contest.
• In Big Ten play this season, Laudermill is 34-for-72 (.472) from long range. Last season, she went 12-for-43 (.279) from beyond the arc in Big Ten play.
• Laudermill ranks third in Big Ten-only three-point field goal percentage (.472) and is tied for fifth in Big Ten three-pointers made (2.4 pg) in conference games-only.
• Laudermill has six games with 15 or more points in the last 10 contests. Prior to the stretch, she had scored a career-high 15 points just once (Creighton, Dec. 14, 2013) in the first 78 games of her career.
• Laudermill has produced double figures 15 times this season - all in the last 22 games. She had just four double-figure efforts in the first 65 games of her career.
• Laudermill ranks fourth among the Huskers with 11 blocked shots this season. She produced five blocked shots in the first 62 games of her career, all coming last season.
• Laudermill is Nebraska's No. 2 active career three-point shooter with 82 makes. She needs 14 more threes to crack NU's career top 10. Her 45 made three-pointers this season are a career single-season high and trail only Jordan Hooper's 64 among the Huskers. Laudermill's 41.7 percent three-point shooting also is a career-best.
• She needs two threes to match Sabrina Brooks (47, 1987-88) on Nebraska's junior single-season list, and three more threes to catch Lindsey Moore (48, 2011-12) on the same chart.
#3, Hailie Sample, 6-0, Jr., F, Flower Mound, Texas (6.3 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.4 apg)
• Hailie Sample is expected to join Jordan Hooper and Emily Cady in Nebraska's starting front line for the 94th consecutive game on Thursday against Illinois.
• Sample is averaging 7.3 points and 6.4 rebounds while shooting 51.2 percent the last eight games. Sample also has hit 14-of-18 free throws (.778) over the last eight contests. In two games against Michigan this season, Sample went 8-for-8 from the field and 4-for-4 at the free throw line.
• Sample carries averages of 6.3 points and 6.0 rebounds, while ranking third on the team with 2.4 assists. She produced double figures for the seventh time this season with 12 points, four rebounds and two assists at Michigan Feb. 13. She had 10 points and seven rebounds at Wisconsin Feb. 5. She also had 10 points and six boards at Iowa Feb. 1. She had 12 points against No. 22 Purdue Jan. 19. She had a season-high 13 points in a win over Creighton on Dec. 14, after producing back-to-back double-digit efforts against Washington State and at North Carolina. Sample owns 13 career double-figure scoring performances, including a career-high 20 points at Creighton last season.
• Sample ranks 13th in the Big Ten in offensive rebounds (2.2 rpg), and 19th overall in rebounding.
• With 19 steals this season, Sample has surpassed her season total of 11 from a year ago.
• Sample has matched single-season career best in points (163) and blocked shots (13) while setting a new career best with 63 assists in 2013-14. She needs two rebounds and one steal to match her single-season career bests in those categories.
• Nebraska's front line players Jordan Hooper, Emily Cady and Hailie Sample are expected to make their 94th consecutive starts together on Thursday against Illinois. The group is averaging 39.6 points and 24.5 rebounds per game this season.
• Emily Cady, Hailie Sample and Rachel Theriot have combined to step up their production from a year ago. The trio combined for just 503 points in NU's first 26 games (19.3 ppg) last season compared to 862 points in 26 contests (33.2 ppg) this season - combining for 13.9 more points per game than 2012-13.
• Junior guard Brandi Jeffery started NU's first three games. She missed the Southern game with an injury but has returned for Nebraska's last 22 games. She is Nebraska's top guard off the bench and has scored in double figures three times, including 10 points against No. 24 Michigan State Feb. 8.
• Nebraska ranks No. 8 nationally with 103,412 fans at home this season. The Huskers rank 10th nationally with an average home attendance of 6,083 per game. The Huskers drew 10 of the top-16 non-conference home crowds in school history this season, including a record 9,750 vs. UCLA (Nov. 8).
Big Red, Big Picture
• Nebraska 2013-14 recruiting class is ranked No. 9 nationally by ESPN.
• Nebraska has sold more than 4,200 all-session tickets for the NCAA Lincoln Regional (March 29-31).
• Nebraska recognized 2013 All-American Lindsey Moore during the Oral Roberts game (Dec. 29) for her part in helping the Minnesota Lynx to the 2013 WNBA title. The first-round pick in the WNBA Draft returned to Lincoln from her professional team in Italy to receive a minute-long standing ovation.
• Nebraska retired 2010 All-American Kelsey Griffin's jersey at the Michigan game (Jan. 29). The 2010 Senior CLASS Award winner and Nebraska Female Student-Athlete of the Year had her number raised at Pinnacle Bank Arena, but not permanently retired. Current Husker Emily Cady shares Griffin's No. 23. Griffin, a four-year WNBA veteran, made a return trip to Lincoln from her club team in Australia.
• The Huskers have advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 twice in the last four seasons (2010, 2013).
• NU has earned NCAA Tournament trips in five of the past seven seasons (2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013).
• Coach Connie Yori is the winningest coach in Husker history (236 victories) and has won conference coach-of-the-year honors in the Big Ten (2013), Big 12 (2012) and Missouri Valley (2002). She was the national coach-of-the-year in 2010.
Scouting the Illinois Fighting Illini
Illinois comes to Lincoln on the opposite end of the Big Ten spectrum to the Huskers. The Illini are caught in an eight-game losing streak. Illinois has struggled offensively, failing to score 70 points since a 76-74 win at Northwestern on Jan. 15, one game after the Huskers ran to a 75-56 win over the Illini in Champaign on Jan. 12. In February, Illinois has gone 0-6 and averaged just 58.5 points per game, while surrendering 71.7 points per contest.
Illinois is 9-18 overall and 2-12 in the Big Ten in Coach Matt Bollant's second season. The Illini are averaging 68.6 points per game on the season, while allowing 71.7 points per game. Illinois owns the Big Ten's best team turnover margin (+5.7 pg). It is even better in Big Ten play (+5.9 pg), but the Illini are last in the league in rebound margin (-9.3 rpg), and even worse (-12.0 rpg) in conference action. The Illini also rank 12th in the league in scoring margin (-3.1 ppg), field goal percentage (.393), three-point field goal percentage (.309) and field goal percentage defense (.442).
Illinois is led by fifth-year senior Amber Moore, who is averaging 14.8 points and 4.9 rebounds per game, while ranking fourth in Big Ten history with 285 three-pointers, including 78 this season. The 5-11 guard/forward is shooting 36.1 percent from long range this year.
Junior Ivory Crawford, a 5-10 guard, has added 14.6 points and 5.4 rebounds as the only Illini to start all 27 games. She also leads Illinois with 57 steals on the season.
Jacqui Grant, a 6-3 freshman forward, gives the Illini three starters averaging in double figures with 13.4 points and a team-best 6.0 rebounds per game. However, Grant has missed the Illini's past five games with illness and is questionable for the game against the Huskers.
Alexis Smith, a 5-9 junior guard, has added 7.8 points and 2.9 rebounds per game, while 5-10 sophomore guard Sarah Hartwell has contributed 7.0 points per game. Hartwell's production has been cut by more than half in Big Ten play (4.6 ppg), after averaging 9.6 points per game in non-conference action.
The Illini get major minutes from Taylor Tuck, who has averaged 4.7 points and 2.3 rebounds per game. Sarah Livingston (3.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg), Taylor Gleason (3.7 ppg, 1.5 rpg) and Nia Oden (2.5 ppg, 2.8 rpg) round out the Illini's list of regular contributors. In fact, Livingston and Gleason have moved into the starting lineup along with 5-9 freshman guard Ashley McConnell over the past five games. McConnell is averaging 1.6 points per game on the year.
Nebraska vs. Illinois Series History
Nebraska owns a 5-3 lead in the all-time series with Illinois, including a 75-56 win at the State Farm Center in Champaign, Ill., on Jan. 12. Jordan Hooper led four Huskers in double figures with 22 points and nine rebounds, while Emily Cady added a double-double with 19 points and 10 boards.
The Fighting Illini won last year's meeting in Lincoln, 62-52 on Jan. 17, 2013. The Huskers scored a season-low 52 points against the Illini, while committing a 2012-13 season-high 26 turnovers. In the first meeting between the two teams as Big Ten foes, the Huskers rolled to a 67-47 victory in Champaign on Jan. 29, 2012.
Nebraska cruised to an 84-67 win at the Devaney Center over the Illini on Dec. 9, 1992. Nebraska is 3-1 all-time at Illinois.
Laudermill, Huskers Shoot Past No. 8 Penn State, 94-74
Tear'a Laudermill tied the school record with seven three-pointers to lead a barrage of 16 threes in No. 16 Nebraska's bombardment of No. 8 Penn State at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
Playing in front of more than 7,000 fans and a Big Monday national television audience on ESPN2, Laudermill hit her first six threes of the game in the first half to help the Huskers go 11-for-14 from long range in the opening period. Laudermill closed the half with 22 points, as NU used an 11-0 run to end the half and take a 52-30 lead to the locker room.
NU hit 67.9 percent (19-28) of its first-half shots, and kept that momentum going through the first eight minutes of the second half, building the lead to 75-43 with 12 minutes left. The Huskers shut out All-American Maggie Lucas in the first half. Laudermill led NU with a career-high 27 points, while Jordan Hooper notched her 11th double-double of the year with 19 points, including 4-of-6 threes, 12 rebounds and a career-high-tying four assists. Rachel Theriot added 17 points and eight assists.
Double Trouble: Hooper, Cady Making History Together
Jordan Hooper and Emily Cady are both tied for second in the Big Ten with 11 double-doubles this season. Hooper notched her 11th double-double with 19 points and 12 rebounds in NU's win over No. 8 Penn State on Monday.
Cady, who recorded her 11th double-double with 12 points and 13 rebounds in Nebraska's win over Indiana Feb. 16, joins fellow forward Jordan Hooper as the only Huskers in history to record double-digit double-doubles in the same season.
Hooper has produced double-digit double-doubles for the second time in her career after producing 14 as a sophomore in 2011-12. She added nine double-doubles last year and ranks second in school history with 37 in her career, trailing only 2010 All-American Kelsey Griffin's 40. Hooper, Griffin and 1993 Wade Trophy winner Karen Jennings are the only Huskers with two double-digit double-double seasons.
Cady's 11 double-doubles this season made her just the sixth Husker in history to produce 10 or more double-doubles in a season, joining Hooper (14, 2011-12; 10, 2013-14), Griffin (10, 2006-07; 20, 2009-10), Jennings (13, 1990-91; 13, 1991-92); Nafeesah Brown (16, 1993-94), Maurtice Ivy (10, 1985-86) and Carol Garey (10, 1978-79). Nebraska players have produced double-digit double-doubles in a season just 10 times in history.
Hooper Named to Wooden Midseason Top 20, Naismith Top 30
Two-time All-American Jordan Hooper was one of 21 players chosen to the Wooden Award Midseason Top 20 and the Naismith Trophy Midseason Top 30 in recent weeks. Hooper is also a member of the Wade Watch List in 2014.
Hooper, a 6-2 senior forward from Alliance, Neb., is a two-time WBCA and Associated Press honorable-mention All-American and a two-time first-team All-Big Ten selection. She is just the third player in Nebraska history to score 2,000 points and grab 1,000 rebounds in her career, joining 1993 Wade Trophy winner Karen Jennings and 2010 first-team WBCA All-American Kelsey Griffin. Hooper, who has scored 2,208 points and pulled down 1,054 rebounds in starting the first 124 games of her Husker career, broke the school's three-point record with 279. Hooper has averaged nearly 72 three-pointers per season at Nebraska, including 81 a year ago when she helped shoot the Huskers to the 2013 NCAA Sweet 16.
Over the summer, Hooper helped the USA Basketball Women's World University Games Team to a gold medal in Kazan, Russia. In the championship, Hooper earned a start and scored nine points while grabbing nine rebounds while going head-to-head against several members of Russia's 2012 Olympic Team.
Hooper was one of three players from the Big Ten to earn mention on the Wooden Award Midseason Top 20 and the Wade and Naismith preseason lists, joining Penn State's Maggie Lucas and Minnesota's Rachel Banham.
Hooper Creating Historic Husker Career
Senior Jordan Hooper is leaving a legacy of success at Nebraska, while making her mark on the national landscape. The 6-2 forward from Alliance, Neb., ranks No. 8 among active NCAA Division I scorers with 2,208 career points. She is tied for No. 14 among active Division I rebounders with 1,054 career boards. Hooper is No. 7 among active career three-point shooters with 279 makes and is one of only two forwards among the top 25, joining UConn's Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (251).
Hooper is one of only six active Division I players to achieve career milestones of 2,000 points and 1,000 career rebounds.
She ranks No. 5 in career field goal attempts (1,911), No. 7 in career three-point field goal attempts (810) and tied for No. 12 in career field goals made (766) among all active NCAA Division I players.
Hooper Joins Big Ten All-Time Elite
Jordan Hooper became just the fifth player in Big Ten Conference history to achieve combined career milestones of 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds, when she pulled down her 1,000th career board in the second half of Nebraska's win over Michigan on Jan. 29. She enters the Illinois game with 2,208 points and 1,054 career rebounds, joining just four other Big Ten players - Jessica Davenport and Jantel Lavender from Ohio State, Jenna Smith from Illinois and Laura Coenen from Minnesota - in achieving the dual milestones.
Lavender (2008-11) scored 2,818 points and grabbed 1,422 rebounds, while Davenport (2004-07) had 2,303 points and 1,094 rebounds for the Buckeyes. Smith (2007-10) produced 2,160 points and 1,217 rebounds for the Fighting Illini, while Coenen (1982-85) was the first Big Ten player to achieve the marks with 2,044 points and 1,029 rebounds for the Golden Gophers.
Hooper, who is on track to rank among the top 10 career scorers and rebounders in Big Ten history, would join Davenport, Lavender and Smith as the only players in Big Ten history to rank among the top 10 on both lists. All three of those players were chosen in the top 15 in their respective WNBA Drafts.
Cady, Theriot, Laudermill Producing All-Big Ten-Caliber Seasons
Emily Cady is a two-time honorable-mention All-Big Ten pick who is making an impressive case for bigger honors as a junior. The 6-2 forward from Seward, Neb., enters the Illinois game tied for second in the Big Ten with two-time first-team All-Big Ten teammate Jordan Hooper with 11 double-doubles, including seven in conference play. Cady is nearly averaging a double-double with 13.0 points and 9.9 rebounds in league action.
In Big Ten play, Cady ranks third in rebounding (9.9 rpg), third in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.9-to-1), eighth in assists (4.1 apg) and tied for 22nd in scoring (13.0 ppg). She also ranks among the top players in the conference overall in field goal percentage (7th, .517) and free throw percentage (8th, .844).
Sophomore Rachel Theriot also has been a dominant player for the Huskers in the Big Ten. The 6-0 point guard from Middleburg Heights, Ohio, ranks second on the Huskers with 15.6 points, while leading NU with 7.4 assists per Big Ten game. The two-time Big Ten Player of the Week (Jan. 20, Feb. 25) ranks seventh in the Big Ten with 15.6 points per game, while ranking second in league play with 7.4 assists per contest. She leads the Big Ten in three-point field goal percentage (.488), assist-to-turnover ratio (2.8-to-1) and minutes played (39.3 mpg) in league play. She ranks 11th in field goal percentage (.494) and is tied for 15th with 1.5 three-pointers made per game in Big Ten action. Overall, she ranks third in free throw percentage (.902).
Both Cady and Theriot were Big Ten All-Freshman selections early in their careers. Cady was chosen to the All-Freshman Team in 2011-12, while Theriot earned a spot in 2012-13.
Tear'a Laudermill has put together a fantastic February to throw her name in the hat for All-Big Ten honors as well. Laudermill erupted for a career-high 27 points and a school-record-tying seven three-pointers in Nebraska's win over No. 8 Penn State Feb. 24. It was the latest act in a February to remember for the 5-9 junior guard from Riverside, Calif., who opened the month with a then-career-high 26 points and four threes in a win at Iowa on Feb. 1. She followed with 21 points and a then-career-high five three-pointers in a road win at Wisconsin on Feb. 5.
In Big Ten play, Laudermill ranks third among the Huskers with 13.7 points per game to rank 17th in the league in scoring. Laudermill's 47.2 three-point field goal percentage ranks third in league play, while her 2.4 made threes per game are tied for fifth. She is also tied for 13th in the Big Ten with 1.4 steals per game.
Laudermill has played a huge role in Nebraska's eight-game winning streak, ranking second on the squad with 16 points per game, while adding 1.6 assists and 1.0 steal per contest. She has hit 51 percent (25-49) of her threes over the last eight games.
Hooper Sets Husker Career Three-Point Record
With four three-pointers against Penn State Feb. 24, All-American Jordan Hooper has pushed the Nebraska career three-point record to 279. She hit a season-high six threes against Indiana Feb. 16 to pass Kiera Hardy's previous school record of 267 (2004-07). No other Husker has hit 200 threes.
Hooper, who hit 67 three-pointers in each of her first two seasons as a Husker, knocked down 81 in 2012-13, to match Hardy's 2005-06 total for the most by a junior in school history.
Hooper did not attempt a three-pointer on her way to a 33-point, 14-rebound performance against Utah State Dec. 8. It is the only game in Hooper's career without a three-point attempt.
She also went without hitting a three in Nebraska's win over Creighton on Dec. 14. It marked just the second time in her career that she went without a made three-pointer in consecutive games, joining a home game against Kansas (0-2) on Jan. 16, 2010, and a road game at Kansas State (0-3) on Jan. 22, 2010 during her freshman season.
This season Hooper has hit three or more threes in a game on 12 occasions, including six of the last seven games.
Hooper Puts Up Double-Doubles at Record Rate
Jordan Hooper ranks second all-time at Nebraska with 37 career double-doubles, following her 19-point, 12-rebound performance in Nebraska's 94-74 win over No. 8 Penn State Feb. 24. It was her third double-double during Nebraska's eight-game winning streak, joining her 25 points and 13 rebounds at Iowa on Feb. 1, and 25 points and 10 boards against Michigan on Jan. 29.
Hooper owns 11 double-doubles this season and five in Big Ten play. She also had 18 points, 10 rebounds against Minnesota on Jan. 16, and 14 points and 10 boards against Northwestern on Jan. 2.
She owns two huge doubles this season with 30 points and 11 rebounds in a win over Oral Roberts on Dec. 29 and 33 points, 14 rebounds in a win over Utah State on Dec. 8.
Hooper, who produced three double-doubles in Big Ten play in 2013, has produced some monstrous doubles in her career. In fact, 21 of her career double-doubles have included 20-point scoring efforts, including five of her eight career 30-point games.
Her 30th career double-double came with 24 points and 14 rebounds in a loss to Washington State on Nov. 30. Last season in a win at 2013 NCAA second-round participant South Florida, Hooper poured in 24 points and had 14 rebounds. The previous game against 2013 NCAA second-round participant Florida State, Hooper erupted for 36 points and 12 boards in a win on Dec. 8, 2012. She recorded her 20th career double-double with 29 points and 10 boards against Idaho State on Dec. 1, 2012.
In the 2012 Big Ten Tournament, Hooper produced three double-doubles in four games, including 25 points and 10 boards against No. 21 Purdue and 21 points and 10 rebounds against No. 14 Ohio State. Earlier in the 2011-12 season, Hooper had 19 points and a career-high 18 rebounds in a win at Wisconsin on Feb. 19, 2012. She added 22 points and 15 rebounds against Iowa on Jan. 26, 2012.
Hooper led the Big Ten and ranked among the top 25 players nationally with 14 double-doubles in 2011-12. Hooper, who produced double figures in 32 of Nebraska's 33 games, recorded 14 double-figure rebounding performances as a sophomore. Hooper's 14 double-doubles ranked as the third-highest single-season total in school history, trailing only first-team All-American Kelsey Griffin's 20 in 2009-10, and Nafeesah Brown's 16 in 1993-94. Griffin and Brown were both seniors when they produced their impressive double-figure totals.
As a sophomore, Hooper became just the fifth player in Nebraska history to post double-figure double-doubles in a season, joining Griffin (10, 2006-07, 20, 2009-10), Brown (16, 1993-94), Karen Jennings (13, 1990-91, 13, 1991-92), Maurtice Ivy (10, 1985-86) and Carol Garey (10, 1978-79).
Hooper recorded double-doubles in a personal-best four straight games (Dec. 18, 2011-Jan. 5, 2012).
Husker Home Attendance Surges Past 100,000
Through 17 home games, the Huskers have attracted 103,412 fans including 10 of the top-16 largest home non-conference crowds in school history. NU has drawn 5,000 or more fans for 13 of its first 17 home games at Pinnacle Bank Arena, including seven of 10 home non-conference games. The Big Red drew only five home non-conference crowds of 5,000 or more in 37 seasons at the Devaney Center.
Nebraska's total home attendance of 103,412 ranks No. 8 nationally, while NU's average home attendance of 6,083 ranks 10th.
Nebraska attracted almost 15,000 fans to Pinnacle Bank Arena in its season-opening weekend, including a non-conference school-record crowd of 9,750 for a season-opening win over UCLA on Nov. 8. The Huskers added a crowd of 4,924 for a Veterans Day win over Alabama on Nov. 11.
The 14,674 fans over two games nearly matched the 15,221 fans who attended Nebraska's eight home non-conference games in Coach Connie Yori's first season in 2002-03.
Nebraska's average home attendance of 5,658 marked the best single-season non-conference average in school history, crushing the 4,049 fans per game the Huskers averaged during home non-conference action in 2012-13. With just one more home non-conference game than a year ago, the Big Red attracted 20,139 more fans than last season (36,436), which was also a school non-conference record.
Growing interest in Nebraska women's basketball is not new. In fact, 13 of the 21 largest non-conference home crowds in school history have come over the last 21 non-conference home games for the Big Red.