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    03/01/2014 - Northwestern Report Card


    hhcdave
    • OVERALL GRADE: B

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    OFFENSE: D+

    I give Nebraska a slightly harsh "D+" because they missed about seven layups in this contest that could have turned this into a laugher and led to a 16-20 point victory.

    The Huskers shot just 37% from the field (including an ice cold 23% from downtown) and needed every one of those 54 points to make this a somewhat comfortable win.

    NU has seen teams adjust to its offensive scheme of isolating Terran Petteway and Shavon Shields the last couple of games and will need Walter Pitchford, Ray Gallegos and even Tai Webster to start combining for 6-8 three pointers a game if its to pull out either game this week.

    Another cold night for Petteway (3-12 from the field, 10 points) but the good news is the third time is a charm, and I bet he comes out on fire Wednesday night in Bloomington.

    Shields is our Player of the Game thanks to a double-double (17 and 10) in 36 minutes.

    DEFENSE: A

    Nebraska held yet another B1G opponent under 40% from the field - I've yet to receive the game notes from Shamus, but I believe that's eight straight Big 10 teams under 40% from the Huskers, which is the first time that's happened since the 1990-1991 season. That could be slightly off, but it's close.

    Nebraska was just TOUGH defensively. I loved the way Ray Gallegos and Petteway played on defense - they didn't let their combined 5-21 from the field affect the way they got after it.

    Slightly concerning that Alex Olah scored a game high 20 points, but I'd rather have him go off than Drew Crawford (who finished with just 11).

    REBOUNDING: A

    Nebraska out boarded Northwestern by eleven (40 to 29)!!! That is AWESOME.

    What I liked even more is that the Huskers held the Wildcats to just five offensive boards. While I'm aware Northwestern doesn't attack the offensive glass much, that's still damn impressive.

    We mentioned Shields above with 10 boards - also a shout out to Pitchford, who grabbed 9. At the start of this year, Walt played soft and was often criticized on this very report card as such.

    He deserves big time credit for elevating his toughness and game. It's never talked about around here, but he should also be in consideration (along with Petteway, Shields and Parker) for Most Improved Player.

    BALL HANDLING: C

    Nebraska finished with a solid ten turnovers, with five coming in the first six or seven minutes.

    Mark me down as becoming slightly concerned with Tai Webster. Nearly every game this year, he's had more turnovers than assists, and that continued tonight (1:4).

    Some will say, "That's fine. He'll play the "2" next year or in the future and play as a combo guard."

    But the shot looks nowhere close enough for that, and if he's not playing point, he loses a good portion of his value.

    I'm by no means trying to bring the kid down; he's just a freshman.

    However, he's DEEP into his freshman year and playing much more than freshman minutes, and it doesn't seem as if he's improving as fast as anyone expected. Add in Benny Parker as clearly the better point guard at this juncture (not close - getting to the rim, not turning it over, defense, finishing) and I'm a bit nervous about the future.

    COACHING: B

    Coach Miles made a nice switch to "the zone" and his team got good shots for a large majority of the night - they just missed them around the rim.

    NU still won by seven in a "must win game" and had they made the shots they should have, they win by 16-20 points. How can you not give Miles a solid "B" for this one?

    OVERALL GRADE: B

    This is a good - not very good, not great, win. It isn't going to impress anyone, but neither was winning by 20. NU could only have its destiny changed by losing this one, and they didn't.

    Now... MUST win one this week (preferably Wisconsin if we have to choose) to keep NCAA hopes alive.

    Win both, you're a lock for the tournament.

    Win one, and you probably need two wins in the Big 10 tournament to be a lock.

    Lose both and you're staring the NIT in the face unless you get to the final game of the Big 10 tournament.

    My hunch?

    Petteway comes to life Wednesday night... Pitchford and Gallegos connect on 5 or 6 combined three's.. and NU sneaks one out in Bloomington.

    For now, let's just stick to looking at that game. A win would sure make next Sunday a fun day and one without near as much stress.

    I've got a feeling the last two games are going to be "heart attack central" for us as fans - and that's a GREAT feeling to be having this late in the year for the first time since March of 1999.

    PLAYER OF THE GAME: SHAVON SHIELDS

    2013-2014 PLAYER OF THE GAME RESULTS:

    TERRAN PETTEWAY - 13

    SHAVON SHIELDS - 7

    WALTER PITCHFORD - 3

    TAI WEBSTER - 2

    LESLEE SMITH - 2

    DEVERELL BIGGS - 1


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    Good report card, pretty much spot on!

    I hope you're right about Wednesday. If so, we should set another home attendance record and crack 16,000 fans for the Wisconsin game. That atmosphere should be unbelievable!

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    Lets throw some bleachers in the open end and also sell standing room only. No sense for the AD to not meet the demand for another 1000-1500 tickets.

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    Shavon played great, but we gotta give it up for Benny. For the kid to stick with this program and compete the way he is speaks volumes. Without his effort today, I'm not so sure we sneak out with a win.

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    Shavon played great, but we gotta give it up for Benny. For the kid to stick with this program and compete the way he is speaks volumes. Without his effort today, I'm not so sure we sneak out with a win.

     

    Benny played fine but not sure he was the reason we won this game. 

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    Shavon played great, but we gotta give it up for Benny. For the kid to stick with this program and compete the way he is speaks volumes. Without his effort today, I'm not so sure we sneak out with a win.

     

    Benny played fine but not sure he was the reason we won this game.

    Yes, but without him....we probably lose....

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    Next year we should do a preseason guess on the potg breakdown for the season. Doubt anyone would have got close to how this one looks.

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    Yes, we might lose without Parker,... but without Shields putting in 17 and 10, we DEFINITELY lose.

    No argument there. I'm just saying I commend the kid for sticking with the program after being given the opportunity to transfer. He's filled a vital role for us

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    100% agree. He's our best point guard right now. With the Biggs dismissal, if we didn't have Parker, we wouldn't be on the NCAA Bubble.

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    100% agree. He's our best point guard right now. With the Biggs dismissal, if we didn't have Parker, we wouldn't be on the NCAA Bubble.

    +1000

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    Truthfully, I don't think we have a point guard on the roster, just some shorter guys capable of dribbling up court.

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    Lets throw some bleachers in the open end and also sell standing room only. No sense for the AD to not meet the demand for another 1000-1500 tickets.

    Can't. That would make our official capacity larger than the Clink in Omaha, which the state legislature currently says cannot happen.

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    Lets throw some bleachers in the open end and also sell standing room only. No sense for the AD to not meet the demand for another 1000-1500 tickets.

    Can't. That would make our official capacity larger than the Clink in Omaha, which the state legislature currently says cannot happen.

     

     

    If PBA added 1,500 bleacher seats now it would only push capacity up to nearly 17,000 w/ a total attendance of 17,500 while the Clink's capacity is already 18,320.w/ a stated record crowd of 18,859 

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CenturyLink_Center_Omaha

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    Mark me down as becoming slightly concerned with Tai Webster. Nearly every game this year, he's had more turnovers than assists, and that continued tonight (1:4).

     

    Some will say, "That's fine. He'll play the "2" next year or in the future and play as a combo guard."

     

    But the shot looks nowhere close enough for that, and if he's not playing point, he loses a good portion of his value.

     

    I'm by no means trying to bring the kid down; he's just a freshman.

     

    However, he's DEEP into his freshman year and playing much more than freshman minutes, and it doesn't seem as if he's improving as fast as anyone expected. Add in Benny Parker as clearly the better point guard at this juncture (not close - getting to the rim, not turning it over, defense, finishing) and I'm a bit nervous about the future.

     

    I agree 100% on Tai.  What concerns me more than the turnovers has been his attitude.  I don't think he is in a good spot right now mentally.  I saw him shrug off Miles when he was taken out of the game due to another turnover, Miles reached out to motion him over & he totally ignored him & tried to go to the bench before Miles went over & grabbed him to talk to him.  Then when Miles was mad that no one went over to attempt to rebound a ball that went out of bounds, Tai must have thought Miles was talking about him & he looked at Miles & acted like he was pissed he was yelling at him again.  Maybe I am reading too much into it or just misreading the body language completely, I hope so.

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    Mark me down as becoming slightly concerned with Tai Webster. Nearly every game this year, he's had more turnovers than assists, and that continued tonight (1:4).

    Some will say, "That's fine. He'll play the "2" next year or in the future and play as a combo guard."

    But the shot looks nowhere close enough for that, and if he's not playing point, he loses a good portion of his value.

    I'm by no means trying to bring the kid down; he's just a freshman.

    However, he's DEEP into his freshman year and playing much more than freshman minutes, and it doesn't seem as if he's improving as fast as anyone expected. Add in Benny Parker as clearly the better point guard at this juncture (not close - getting to the rim, not turning it over, defense, finishing) and I'm a bit nervous about the future.

    I agree 100% on Tai. What concerns me more than the turnovers has been his attitude. I don't think he is in a good spot right now mentally. I saw him shrug off Miles when he was taken out of the game due to another turnover, Miles reached out to motion him over & he totally ignored him & tried to go to the bench before Miles went over & grabbed him to talk to him. Then when Miles was mad that no one went over to attempt to rebound a ball that went out of bounds, Tai must have thought Miles was talking about him & he looked at Miles & acted like he was pissed he was yelling at him again. Maybe I am reading too much into it or just misreading the body language completely, I hope so.

    If I remember that 2nd one correctly, tai jumped too early and the ball took a big hop so it looked like he didn't go after the rebound. Miles yelled "Rebound Webster!" Tai laughed it off and seemed to wonder why he was getting yelled at. And that put him on the bench. I think miles will be a bit more forgiving when he watches the film

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    Again....I'm just thrilled at where the team is now. Yes the dance would be amazing. However way I look at it anything we get from this point forward is way more than most predicted.

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    Lets throw some bleachers in the open end and also sell standing room only. No sense for the AD to not meet the demand for another 1000-1500 tickets.

    Can't. That would make our official capacity larger than the Clink in Omaha, which the state legislature currently says cannot happen.

    If PBA added 1,500 bleacher seats now it would only push capacity up to nearly 17,000 w/ a total attendance of 17,500 while the Clink's capacity is already 18,320.w/ a stated record crowd of 18,859

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CenturyLink_Center_Omaha

    All I know is they took the basketball capacity as high as the stupid legislative bill stating that the Clink had to have the highest seating capacity would allow.

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    Lets throw some bleachers in the open end and also sell standing room only. No sense for the AD to not meet the demand for another 1000-1500 tickets.

    Can't. That would make our official capacity larger than the Clink in Omaha, which the state legislature currently says cannot happen.

    If PBA added 1,500 bleacher seats now it would only push capacity up to nearly 17,000 w/ a total attendance of 17,500 while the Clink's capacity is already 18,320.w/ a stated record crowd of 18,859

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CenturyLink_Center_Omaha

    All I know is they took the basketball capacity as high as the stupid legislative bill stating that the Clink had to have the highest seating capacity would allow.

     

     

    I'm a little fuzzy on the specifics, but what I remember of the process was that the Legislature required the initial seating capacity of PBA to remain lower than the initial seating capacity of Century Link when it was first built in order to get support for the tax bill needed to finance it.

     

    That initial part is the relevant part here, as Century Link was right at 16,000 IIRC when it was first built, with an open end (just like PBA has now).  Of course, Century Link was expanded after its first year of operation to its current capacity of just under 18k.

     

    Pinnacle Bank Arena was built with the same type of expansion in mind, and it's obvious that is the case because you can see part of the structure for expansion in place already.  They would not have built the arena with such obvious expansion plans in place if it were not possible.  One does not just spend $180 million without knowing for absolute sure whether something is possible or not.

     

    So, what I'm saying here is, there will be a point in the future (assuming continued success of the arena and popularity of basketball) where they will expand PBA to it's final seating capacity, which, as I understand it could reach 17-18k.

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