NU MBB: Huskers host Hoosiers on Saturday

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Courtesy: NU Media Relations

The Nebraska men’s basketball team looks to bounce back after Wednesday’s loss to Northwestern, as the Huskers host Indiana at Pinnacle Bank Arena Saturday afternoon.

Tipoff is slated for 3 p.m. and tickets are available for the contest by calling the NU Athletics Ticket Office at 800-8-BIGRED, visiting Huskers.com or at the Pinnacle Bank Arena box office beginning at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday.
The game will be televised nationally on BTN with Steve Physioc and Bob Wenzel on the call. The game between the Huskers and Hoosiers will also be available on BTN2Go on laptops, tablets and mobile devices.

Saturday’s contest will also air across the state on the Husker Sports Network with Kent Pavelka and Matt Davison, including KLIN 1400 AM in Lincoln, KXSP 590 AM in Omaha and KRVN 880 in Lexington and is also available on Huskers.com and the Huskers App.

The Huskers (8-6, 0-1 Big Ten) put three players in double figures, but were unable to hold a lead down the stretch, as the Huskers lost to Northwestern, 81-72, in the Big Ten opener for both teams. Nebraska received a career day from Benny Parker, as the senior tied or set personal bests in both points (17) and assists (seven), and grabbed five rebounds in a losing effort. Nebraska led 51-39 with 17:43 left, but Northwestern shot 55 percent in the second half to rally down the stretch. Andrew White III continued his strong early season play with 22 points, including five 3-pointers, while Tai Webster added 11 points off the bench. Nebraska had 18 assists and a season-low six turnovers, but was out-rebounded, 40-25, on the glass in the loss.

Indiana (11-3, 1-0 Big Ten) comes to town riding a six-game win streak following a 79-72 win at Rutgers Wednesday afternoon. Yogi Ferrell had 20 points and seven assists for the Hoosiers, while Max Bielfeldt had 18 points and 14 points off the bench. Indiana leads the Big Ten in offense, averaging 88.4 points per game and shoots 45 percent from 3-point range.

NUMBERS TO KNOW
17 – Career high points for Benny Parker against Northwestern. The senior went 5-10 from 3-point range and added seven assists and two steals in the loss.

8 – Benny Parker became the eighth different player to lead NU in rebounding in 2015-16, as he grabbed a season-high five boards against Northwestern. It marked the first time in 110 career games that Parker tied or led the team in rebounding.

9 – Nebraska has scored 70+ points nine times this season, which matches the number of times the Huskers did it during the entire 2014-15 season.

11 – Nebraska hit 11 3-pointers in Wednesday’s loss to Northwestern, the third time this season NU hit 10-or-more 3-pointers in a game.

3-to-1 – Nebraska’s 18 assists compared to six turnovers gave NU a 3-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio. It was NU’s best effort since posting a 3.5-to-1 ratio against Purdue during the 2012-13 season. In that game, NU had just seven assists, but set a school record with just two turnovers. Here are the five best assist-to-turnover ratio games under Miles at NU.

Indiana returned four starters and nine letterwinners from a team that went 20-14 before losing to Wichita State in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Under eighth-year coach Tom Crean, Indiana has the Big Ten’s top offensive attack, leading the conference in points per game (88.4), field goal percentage (.533) and 3-point percentage (.449) while ranking fourth in rebounding (+7.8 per game).

SCOUTING INDIANA
Indiana enters Saturday’s game with an 11-3 mark following a seven-point win at Rutgers on Wednesday. The Hoosiers have won six straight since a loss at Duke on Dec. 2, including a win over Notre Dame in the Crossroads Classic in Indianapolis. The Hoosiers’ other two losses came against Wake Forest and UNLV in the Maui Invitational.

Senior point guard Yogi Ferrell is one of the Big Ten’s top performers, as he averages 16.4 points and 6.0 assists per game to rank in the top six in both categories. He is one of four Indiana players averaging double figures. Troy Williams averages 13.6 points and a team-high 6.9 rebounds per game, while freshman Thomas Bryant averages 11.5 points on 72 percent shooting and 4.9 caroms per game. The Hoosiers may be without one of their top players, as James Blackmon Jr. (15.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg) missed the Rutgers game with an injury and his status is undetermined.

SERIES HISTORY
Nebraska and Indiana meet for the 15th time on Saturday, and sixth since the Huskers joined the Big Ten. Indiana leads the all-time series, 10-4, but Nebraska has won three of the five meetings since joining the conference. Indiana won the only meeting of 2015-16, and the teams will meet again in Bloomington on Feb. 17.

Last Meeting: Nebraska erased a 16-point first-half deficit, but could not complete the comeback, as the Huskers lost a hard-fought battle to Indiana, 70-65, in the 2014-15 Big Ten Conference opener. Nebraska used a 26-6 run to take a 46-42 lead with 15:38 left after a Walter Pitchford 3-pointer. With the score deadlocked at 49, Indiana used a 12-3 run to take a nine-point lead and never trailed again. Terran Petteway had a game-high 23 points for Nebraska, while Shavon Shields added 20 points. Robert Johnson led three Hoosiers in double figures with 14 points, while Mosquera-Perea tied his career high with 12 points and posted a double-double by adding 10 rebounds.