Photo Credit: Katy Cowell/Nebraska Communications Photo Credit: Katy Cowell/Nebraska Communications

Huskers Battle Michigan Wednesday Evening.

Photo Credit: Katy Cowell/Nebraska Communications Photo Credit: Katy Cowell/Nebraska Communications

The Nebraska men's basketball team returns to the road Wednesday evening, as the Huskers travel to Ann Arbor, Mich., to take on the Michigan Wolverines. Tipoff at Crisler Center is slated for 5:30 p.m. (central) and Wednesday's game will be carried on BTN and the Huskers Radio Network. It will also be available online on the Fox Sports app.

Nebraska (11-13, 4-9 Big Ten) comes into Wednesday's game with some momentum following a 72-63 win over Penn State on Sunday. Keisei Tominaga led all scorers with a career-high 30 points, including five 3-pointers, as Nebraska shot 53 percent and committed a season-low seven turnovers. Tominaga, who was NU's sixth man for the majority of the season, is averaging 15.1 points per game on 53 percent shooting over the Huskers' last seven contests.

Game 25: at Michigan
Date: Wednesday,  Feb. 8
Tipoff:  5:30 p.m. (CT) 
Location: Ann Arbor, Mich.
Arena: Crisler Center

On the Air
Radio: Wednesday's game will be carried on the Huskers Radio Network with Kent Pavelka and Jake Muhleisen on the call, including KLIN (1400 AM) in Lincoln, KXSP (590 AM) in Omaha and KRVN (880 AM) in Lexington and will also be available on and the Huskers app. The pregame show begins an hour before tipoff.

TV/Online: Wednesday's game will be televised on BTN with Kevin Kugler and Robbie Hummel on the call. The game will also be available online on the Fox Sports app.

All eight Huskers who played against Penn State broke into the scoring column, including freshmen Jamarques LawrenceDenim Dawson and Sam Hoiberg, who have been thrust into significant roles because of injuries. The trio combined for 22 points, 14 rebounds, six assists and three steals against Penn State, while Lawrence nearly posted a double-double with 11 points and a career-high nine rebounds. 

Michigan (13-10, 7-5 Big Ten) brings a two-game win streak into Wednesday's matchup following a 77-69 win over Ohio State on Sunday. Hunter Dickinson led all scorers with 26 points and 11 rebounds, while Jett Howard and Kobe Bufkin added 16 and 13 points, respectively. The Wolverines never trailed and held Ohio State to 41 percent shooting. 

The Big Ten race is jumbled behind league leader Purdue. Michigan enters the week in a six-team tie for third in the Big Ten standings, as just two games separate third from 11th place while Nebraska is just one game in the win column out of 10th place, heading into a stretch where four of the next six games are at home. 

Following Wednesday's game, the Huskers will host Wisconsin Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m. Tickets for that game are available at 

Numbers to Know
4 - Derrick Walker ranks in the top 10 in the Big Ten in both rebounding and assists. As of Feb. 6, only four power conference players rank in the top 10 of their respective conferences in those categories: Walker, Jalen Pickett (Penn State), Justyn Mutts (Virginia Tech) and Drew Peterson USC).

47.6 - Nebraska is shooting 47.6 percent from the field over the last five contests. NU shot just 43.0 percent from the floor in its previous five contests.

11 - Nebraska will play its 11th road game of the season on Wednesday, a total which leads all of the power conference programs. As of Feb. 6, NU is tied with Villanova, Washington State and DePaul. In January, NU played six road games and travel over 8,100 miles.  

13.8 - Nebraska ranks 10th nationally and second in the Big Ten with 13.8 fouls per game as of Feb. 6. NU fouled a season-low six times in Sunday's win over Penn State.

Worth Noting 

NU's 30-Point Games (Big Ten era)
No. Player 30+ Point Games
1. James Palmer Jr. 4
2. Terry Petteway 3
  Shavon Shields 3
4. Andrew White II 2
5. Keisei Tominaga 1
  Alonzo Verge Jr. 1
  Glynn Watson Jr. 1
  Teddy Allen 1
  Isaac Copeland 1
  Ray Gallegos 1

• Keisei Tominaga became the 10th Huskers in the Big Ten era (2011-present) to post a 30-point game with his effort against Penn State on Sunday afternoon. Tominaga had 30 points on 12-of-18 shooting, as he matched his career high with five 3-pointers. Prior to Sunday, no Husker had posted a 25-point game this season. Tominaga also became the 13th player in the Big Ten to record a 30-point game in 2022-23

• Nebraska will look for its first-ever win in Ann Arbor on Wednesday evening. Crisler Center is one of two Big Ten road venues that the Huskers have not won in since joining the Big Ten (also Mackey Arena).

• Since the season-ending injuries to Juwan Gary and Emmanuel Bandoumel, a trio of freshmen have earned significant spots in the Husker rotation. Jamarques Lawrence and Denim Dawson moved into the starting lineup while Sam Hoiberg moved into the guard rotation. Here are their numbers heading into the Penn State game where Bandoumel suffered his knee injury and in the last five contests. 

• Sunday's win over Penn State marked the first time this season that NU won a game without Sam Griesel and Derrick Walker scoring in double figures since Walker returned to the lineup on Nov. 25. 

• Wednesday's game features two of the 22 father-son duos in college hoops with Fred and Sam Hoiberg of Nebraska and Michigan's Juwan Howard and his sons Jett and Jace. The fathers matched up once as college players, a 94-72 Michigan win at the Palace of Auburn Hills in 1992.

• Over the last four games, Nebraska's freshmen have accounted for 36.9 percent of the team's minutes, including 40 percent at Maryland on Jan. 28.

• Nebraska has improved its 3-point shooting in recent weeks. Over the last four games, NU is shooting 39 percent from beyond the arc, compared to just 30 percent in the first 20 contests. 

Finding the 3-Point Range
Games 3pt Pct. 3/GM
First 20 Games .298 6.1
Last 4 Games .392 7.8

• Nebraska has started multiple freshmen in each of the last four games dating back to Jan. 25. Against Illinois on Jan. 31, the Huskers started a trio of freshmen in Denim DawsonJamarques Lawrence and Sam Hoiberg. It marked the first time since 2015-16 that NU started a trio of freshmen. 

• Nebraska has nine active scholarship players following season-ending injuries to Juwan Gary (shoulder), Emmanuel Bandoumel (knee) and Quaran McPherson (knee). In addition, Ramel Lloyd Jr. will redshirt this season.  Nebraska got some good news on the health front last week, as Blaise Keita returned to action at Illinois on Jan. 31. Keita, a 6-foot-11 sophomore, had four rebounds and a blocked shot in 11 minutes of action, his longest stint of action since Dec. 10.  

• Nebraska has faced one of the nation's toughest schedules in 2022-23. As of Feb. 6, Nebraska's NET strength of schedule is fifth nationally.  Michigan State (second), Wisconsin (eighth) and Ohio State (10th) and give the Big Ten four teams in the top 10 nationally in strength of schedule in the NET. 

• NU's adjusted strength of schedule is fourth in KenPom as of Feb. 2, which would mark the third time in Fred Hoiberg's four seasons that the Huskers have had a SOS in the top 10 (2019-20, 8th; 2020-21, 4th).

• Since Nebraska joined the Big Ten, the Huskers have had 21 freshmen (true, redshirt or covid year) start at least one game, and Jarmarques Lawrence became just the second Husker to reach double figures in his first start with 12 points against Northwestern. He joined Bryce McGowens (25 vs. Western Illinois, 2021) as the only two freshmen to score double figures in their first career start since 2011-12. 

• Of the 13 players who have seen action for the Huskers this season, 10 have reached double figures at least once in 2022-23. Sam Hoiberg was the most recent member to reach that mark with his 15-point effort at Maryland on Jan. 28. 

• Juwan Gary's injury in the first meeting against Illinois has hampered the Huskers' rebounding efforts. In Big Ten play, NU is 4-0 when out-rebounding opponents, but winless in conference play when being out-rebounded. 
NU had a +2.5 rebounding margin in the 17 games that Gary was in the lineup and the Huskers were on track for their first positive rebounding margin since the 2016-17 season. Since then, NU has been out-rebounded by 6.5 rebounds per game.  

• Derrick Walker is averaging a team-high 7.4 rebounds per game to rank ninth in the Big Ten in rebounding as of Feb. 2. It is on pace to be NU's highest rebounding average since the 2007-08 season. Since 2000, only five Huskers - Ed Morrow Jr. (2016-17), Aleks Maric (2005-06, 2006-07, 2007-08), Andrew Drevo (2002-03), Kimani Ffriend (1999-2000, 2000-01) - have averaged at least seven rebounds per game.  

• Derrick Walker is one of only two Big Ten players this year to have a game of at least 20 points, eight rebounds and seven assists as he did against Minnesota on Jan. 7.  Jalen Pickett has done it three times (most recently vs Michigan on Jan. 29). Over the last three seasons (2020-21 to 2022-23), it has happened just seven times, including twice by Husker players.

• Nebraska's 63-53 win at No. 7 Creighton on Dec. 4 marked the program's fourth-ever road win over a top-10 team and marked the Huskers' first win at Creighton since the 2004 NIT. The No. 7 Bluejays were the highest ranked opponent that NU beat on the road since 1997. As of Feb. 2, it is Creighton's only home loss of the season. 

• Nebraska has been the one team to keep Zach Edey in check in 2022-23, holding the national player of the year frontrunner to just 11.5 points per game in two contests. Edey's two lowest scoring percentages came in the two games against Nebraska. 

• Nebraska's win over Ohio State on Jan. 18 marked the Huskers' first win over the Buckeyes in Lincoln since the 2014 campaign and marked the first time NU had beaten the Buckeyes in consecutive games. 

• The Huskers broke a couple of overtime losing streaks in the win at Minnesota on Jan. 7. The win snapped a six-game losing streak in overtime games dating back to the 2019-20 season and marked NU's first road OT win in conference play since Feb. 17, 2001. 

About Michigan
Michigan enters Wednesday's game with a 13-10 record and a two-game win streak. The Wolverines are 9-3 at home, including 5-1 in Big Ten play. UM comes off its best week of the season, posting a 17-point win at Northwestern on Thursday before beating Ohio State on Sunday. 

Michigan is led by fourth-year head coach Juwan Howard, who took over the Michigan program in May of 2019. Howard, who starred at Michigan during the Fab 5 era, spent 19 seasons in the NBA playing for eight franchises and won two NBA titles with the Miami Heat in 2012-13. He worked in the Miami Heat organization for six seasons, the final five as an assistant coach before returning to his alma mater in 2019. The Wolverines have made the NCAA Tournament in each of the last two seasons, including an Elite Eight appearance in 2021 and a Sweet 16 showing last year. 

Hunter Dickinson anchors the Wolverine attack, as he averages 18.1 points on 55 percent shooting and 8.4 rebounds per game. A two-time All-Big Ten pick, he has scored 20+ points in three of his last five games. Jett Howard has been one of the Big Ten's top freshmen, as he averages 14.6 points per game and leads Michigan with 59 3-pointers. Sophomore Kobe Bufkin is the third Wolverine who averages double figures at 12.2 points per game and is second on the team with 3.0 assists per game. 

Series History: Michigan leads the all-time series, 21-3, in a series that goes back to 1949, although the Wolverines' win over the Huskers in the 1992 Rainbow Classic was later vacated. Michigan has won 15 of the 16 meetings since Nebraska joined the Big Ten with the Huskers' only win coming in a 72-52 win in Lincoln during the 2017-18 campaign. One of Nebraska's three wins in the series was a 74-73 win over No. 1 Michigan at the NU Coliseum on Dec. 12, 1964. In that game, Fred Hare's buzzer beater knocked off the Cazzie Russell-led Wolverines. That win is one of three wins over No. 1 ranked teams in Nebraska's history.

Last meeting: Nebraska stormed back from a 10-point second-half deficit with a 19-3 run, but Michigan held on for an 85-79 win over the Huskers on Feb. 1. Bryce McGowens poured in a team-high 24 points to lead Nebraska while Derrick Walker added 10 points on 5-of-6 shooting.  Nebraska shot 50.8 percent from the field, including 12-of-15 from the free throw line. NU shot 7-of-18 from three-point range while limiting Michigan to 2-of-15 shooting from long distance. Hunter Dickinson led Michigan with 26 points and eight rebounds while Eli Brooks added 20 for the winners.

Last Time Out
Keisei Tominaga finished with a career-high 30 points, as Nebraska led nearly wire to wire in a 72-63 victory over Penn State on Feb. 5

Tominaga's 30-point outburst – the first by a Husker since December of 2021 – was highlighted by 12-of-18 shooting, including a career-high five 3-pointers, as Nebraska snapped a four-game losing streak. 
Jamarques Lawrence nearly posted a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds, while Derrick Walker had nine points, a career-high seven assists and six boards, as Nebraska shot 52.9 percent from the field and committed a season-low seven turnovers.

Nebraska, which shot 56 percent in the first half, used a 11-0 run to build a 26-13 lead after a Wilhelm Breidenbach jumper with 10:04 remaining in the half. Nebraska eventually stretched the lead to 15 and took a 37-28 lead in the locker room. 

The Nittany Lions, who went 14-of-38 from 3-point range, kept chopping into the lead and got within 57-54 with 5:52 left, but Tominaga answered with a layup and a 3-pointer to stretch the lead back out to eight.  PSU pulled to within 62-58 before Sam Griesel's layup and a pair of Sam Hoiberg free throws pushed the lead to eight and NU held on for the win.

Seth Lundy had a team-high 24 points, going 8-of-13 from 3-point range, while Jalen Pickett finished with 15 points, seven rebounds and seven assists. PSU made 14 3-pointers but were held to 40 percent shooting from the field.  

Defensive Improvement

Biggest Decrease in Opponent PPG (as of Feb. 6)
No. School (Conf.)  OPP PPG Decrease
1 Oregon St. (Pac-12) -11.3
2. Southern Miss. (Sun Belt) -11.2
3. Bucknell (Patriot) -11.0
4. Nebraska (Big Ten) -10.2
5. Ark.-Pine Bluff (SWAC) -10.1

ka has made significant improvement on the defensive end this season, which is a big reason why the Huskers have already surpassed their 2021-22 win total. 

  • Nebraska has climbed from No. 178 to No. 47 nationally in defensive efficiency in KenPom. NU was 35th in defensive efficiency entering the Penn State game when Emmanuel Bandoumel suffered his season-ending injury.
  • The jump is more impressive when you consider that Nebraska has played 13 games against teams currently in the top-50 nationally in offensive efficiency as of Feb. 6.
  • Nebraska is allowing 10.2 points per game less than last season, a decrease which is fourth nationally.
  • Nebraska has held 12 opponents to 1.0 point per possession or less. 
  • The Huskers held Ohio State to a season-low 60 points in NU's 63-60 win on Jan. 18.
  • In the overtime loss to No. 4 Purdue on Dec. 10, Nebraska held the Boilermakers to 0.99 points per possession. Purdue leads the nation in offensive efficiency as of Feb. 6
  • Nebraska held Iowa, which is currently second in offensive efficiency to 0.76 per possession and just 26 percent shooting on Dec. 29.
  • In NU's win at No. 7 Creighton on Dec. 4, the Huskers limited the Bluejays to 0.73 points per possession, the Huskers' best performance in a road game in over a decade. 

Gary, Bandoumel to Miss Remainder of 2022-23 season
The last two weeks have been tough on the injury front, as NU has two starters out with season-ending injuries. 

  • On Jan. 25, Juwan Gary had season-ending surgery on his left shoulder. He is expected to return to action in 5-6 months.  Gary had started NU's first 17 games before suffering the injury against Illinois on Jan. 10. He was averaging 9.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and a team-high 1.4 steals per game.  He ranked in the top 15 in the Big Ten in steals (seventh) and rebounding (15th) at the time of his injury and totaled nine double-figure games. He had a season-high 18 points in Nebraska's win at Minnesota on Jan. 7.
  • Senior guard Emmanuel Bandoumel joined Gary on the sideline, as he suffered a knee injury in the first half of Nebraska's game at Penn State on Jan. 21 and had surgery on Jan. 26th.  Bandoumel started NU's first 20 games and averaged 8.4 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.0 steals per game. He was second on the team in minutes per game (31.1) and ranked third on the team in both assists and steals. He totaled nine double figure games, including 18 points apiece against Memphis and Omaha.
  • Entering the Michigan game, NU players have missed a combined 48 games this season:  Quaran McPherson (24); Derrick Walker (5); Blaise Keita (6); Juwan Gary (7), Sam Griesel (2) and Emmanuel Bandoumel (4). McPherson had season-ending knee surgery in September. 

Hometown Kid Making Good
Sam Griesel has enjoyed quite the homecoming, averaging 11.3 points, 4.0 assists, 5.5 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game from his point guard spot. Griesel spent the last four seasons at North Dakota State, earning All-Summit League honors in 2021 and 2022 before returning to Lincoln for his senior year. 

  • He ranks in the top 10 in both steals and assists and is 11th in assist-to-turnover ratio and minutes. 
  • Griesel had 21 points at Illinois on Jan. 31, his second 20-point game of 2022-23.
  • He has 12 double-figure games this season, including seven straight games from Dec. 20 to Jan. 21.
  • The senior came up big in the win at Minnesota with 17 points, six rebounds and five assists, while going 6-of-6 from the foul line.
  • Griesel collected his second double-double in the win over Iowa with 12 points and team highs in rebounds (10) and assists (five).
  • The Huskers' first scholarship recruit from Lincoln since Jake Muhleisen in the early 2000s, Griesel keyed NU's win at No. 7 Creighton with 18 points, a season-high 12 rebounds and seven assists. 
  • Against Maine, Griesel scored a season-high 22 points and grabbed nine rebounds while also chipping in 18 points in the win over Omaha. 

Walker Puts Together Strong Senior Season
Derrick Walker has made a significant impact on the Huskers since returning to action on Nov. 25. Walker has been a force, averaging 13.2 points on 60 percent shooting, 7.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game. The 6-foot-9 senior forward was NU's only returning starter entering 2022-23 and has 13 double-figure efforts. 

  • He is one of just 14 players nationally averaging at least 13 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game as of Feb. 6.
  • Walker is one of just four power conference players nationally who ranks in the top 10 of their respective conferences in both rebounds (ninth) and assists (10th) per game.
  • He is second in the Big Ten in field goal percentage (.596), a total which ranks 26th nationally as of Feb. 6. 
  • Walker has a team-high three double-doubles (Memphis, Florida State and No. 4 Purdue) and six for his career.
  • He had his fourth career 20-point game at Penn State on Jan. 21 with 20 points on 9-of-14 shooting, six rebounds and six assists.
  • Walker had a strong performance at No. 3 Purdue with 19 points, six rebounds and four assists, while helping limit Zach Edey to 12 points on seven shots.
  • Walker had one of the finest games of his career in NU's OT win at Minnesota on Jan. 7 with 22 points, eight rebounds and seven assists. He set or tied personal bests in both points and assists.
  • His most recent double-double was a 14-point, 10-rebound effort against No. 4 Purdue on Dec. 10.  He also helped limit Zach Edey to a season-low 11 points, snapping his streak of eight straight 20-point games. 
  • He keyed NU's win over No. 7 Creighton with a career-high 22 points on 11-of-16 shooting and eight rebounds against Ryan Kalkbrenner, the reigning Big East Defensive Player of the Year. Walker's efforts helped NU enjoy a 46-16 advantage in points in the paint. 
  • Walker posted his first career 20-point game in a win over Florida State on Nov. 27, with 20 points on 10-of-12 shooting and matched his career high with 13 rebounds. 
  • He made his 2022-23 debut against Memphis and had 15 points and 12 boards in a loss to the Tigers. 
  • Walker averaged 9.5 ppg and 6.0 rpg in 2022, breaking NU's single-season field goal percentage mark by shooting 68.3 percent from the field.

Tominaga Moves into Starting Role
Whether starting or off the bench, Keisei Tominaga has been a spark for the Huskers' attack this season.  The 6-foot-2 guard is third on the team in scoring at 11.1 points per game while averaging 22 minutes per contest. 

  • He starred in Nebraska's win over Penn State on Feb. 5, scoring a career-high 30 points on 12-of-18 shooting. He also matched his career high in 3-pointers with five in the 72-63 win.
  • Tominaga leads the Huskers in both 3-pointers (42) and 3-point percentage (.391). 
  • He has a team-high 14 double figure games and was among the Big Ten's leaders in bench scoring before he was inserted in the lineup on Jan. 18. 
  • Tominaga posted his second 20-point game of the year against Northwestern, finishing with 22 points on 9-of-17 shooting. He scored NU's first 12 points and had 15 first-half points against the Wildcats. 
  • Tominaga posted a 16-point effort at No. 3 Purdue on Jan. 13, hitting 5-of-8 shots from the field, including four 3-pointers. 
  •  He enjoyed one of his best efforts of the year in NU's 65-62 loss to No. 4 Purdue on Dec. 10 with 19 points, including four 3-pointers. He sent the game to OT with a 3-pointer with 9.1 seconds left in regulation. 
  • Of Tominaga's 21 career double-figure games at Nebraska, 12 have come off the bench, including 23-point efforts against Boston College on Nov. 29 and against South Dakota last season.
  • Tominaga shined in NU's win over Boston College on Nov. 30. He tied his career high of 23 points on just eight field goal attempts (7-8 FG, 4-5 3PT; 5-5 FT) for his second career 20-point game. He had 17 of his 23 markers in the first half, including 11 straight NU points.
  • Tominaga also had a team-high 15 points at St. John's and a 19-point effort against Maine. In the game against Maine, he connected on 7-of-12 shots from the field in 20 minutes of work.
  • Over the summer, Tominaga was with the Japanese National Team, making his debut in the FIBA World Cup Asia qualifier in early July and then starred for Japan in the 2022 Asia Cup. In seven games with the Senior National Team, Tominaga averaged 15.9 points per game while shooting 39.3 percent from the 3-point line. His best performance came against Australia in the Asia Cup quarterfinals, when he poured in 33 points on 12-of-20 shooting, including 8-of-15 from 3-point range. 

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