Nebraska failed its first test of the season but doesn’t have much time to dwell on the defeat. The Cornhuskers are back on the court Sunday for a matinee matchup with North Dakota.
Nebraska won its first two games against smaller schools before falling at St. John’s 79-56 on Thursday. The Cornhuskers shot only 28.1 percent from the field and missed 20 of their 26 3-pointers. James Palmer Jr. (13 points) was the only player in double digits but also had three of the team’s 13 turnovers. North Dakota has posted two wins this season, bookending a three-point loss at Hawaii.
TV: 2 p.m. ET, Big Ten Network
ABOUT NORTH DAKOTA (2-1): The Fighting Hawks boast one of the Big Sky’s best players in junior guard Geno Crandall, who is averaging 27.3 points on 64.1 percent shooting from the field and 11-of-17 shooting beyond the arc. Crandall has scored 21 and 20 points in the last two games, respectively, but his major statement this season came in a 41-point outburst on 15-of-19 shooting in the season opener against Troy. Cortez Seales is averaging 13.3 points, boosted by a team-high 22-point effort in Monday’s triumph over Arkansas-Pine Bluff.
ABOUT NEBRASKA (2-1): Palmer is averaging a team-high 14.3 points, while Glynn Watson Jr. comes in at 13.7 points and Evan Taylor at 11 per game. However, all three are shooting under 40 percent on the year and, in fact, six of the top seven scorers for Nebraska are shy of 40 percent shooting on the season. Isaiah Roby has been strong on the interior with averages of 10 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.7 blocks through the first three contests.
1. Nebraska has more turnovers (40) than assists (32) on the young season with Palmer (seven) the only player with more than five assists in three games.
2. North Dakota only has seven blocks in three games.
3. Watson, who made 39.7 percent of his 3-pointers last season, is 3-of-13 from the arc this year.
PREDICTION: Nebraska 63, North Dakota 55