Hi guys, welcome to the latest version of our Nebrasketball chat. Season opener is Sunday night against Sacramento State, the early signing period for recruits started today, and the Huskers are coming off a 53-point exhibition win against Chadron State. Feel free to fire away.
Nebraska is expected to sign one player this period, which runs from today through Nov. 16: Nana Akenten, a 6-6 , 190-pound guard out of Bollingbrook, Ill. No rating from any of the major recruiting services, but a guy with good size who was starting to get some interests from schools such as Minnesota and Wisconsin.
@BrendyLee: I think that's just his personality. I know his players respect him, and I know coaches around the country respect him. Michigan State's Tom Izzo, who is probably the most respected coach in the Big Ten, has long spoken highly of Miles and his coaching ability. Personally, I like Miles' demeanor. I think it's easy for us to get caught up in sports being this big, serious thing when we need to remember that they're supposed to be fun. And Miles certainly keeps it fun.
@MarqelWashington: If there was a lineup with those two out there at the same time, it wasn't out there for very long. I could see them playing together more if other guys get in foul trouble, but with Michael Jacobson, Morrow and Jordy, I think Miles feels like he has a pretty good rotation of guys he can move in and out.
@MarqelWashington: Jordy is pretty raw, for sure. But you can't teach 6-11, and that will keep him on the court until he proves to Miles he shouldn't be out there. He's going to have to work hard, especially on the defensive end and what it takes to play defense at this level. He fouled out against Chadron State, which was a sub-.500 Division II team last season. That won't fly against the Kansases and the Michigan States of the world
Right now, Akenten is the only player expected to sign during this period. Nebraska will only have one other open scholarship for next season after Akenten signs, which I would expect to go towards another guard/small forward type. A couple guys who made unofficial visits earlier this season have signed with other schools, so the feeling I get is that last spot is pretty wide open right now.
I don't think he's on the hot seat this year, unless there's just a complete meltdown at some point during the season. I think Shawn Eichorst realizes Miles is now trying to build this program through high school recruits after bringing in transfers to jump start things during his first few years here, and that takes time. Now, if the 2017-18 season - when this sophomore class is juniors and the freshmen are sophomores - is a struggle, I think the seat starts to get warm.
I'm actually probably a little more optimistic for this Husker season than a lot of folks. I sat down yesterday and went through every regular season game, and I can see them, with a couple upsets, getting to 17 wins and 9-9 in the Big Ten. I think most fans would take that right now if you gave it to them.
Anybody here go to the exhibition game Monday night? What did you think? Tough take a lot away from that, I know, but I thought a few guys showed some real flashes. Isaiah Roby is going to be special. Tai Webster and Glynn Watson were rock solid at the guard spots. It was really nice to see Ed Morrow healthy and battling inside.
@Rick: Yep. That athleticism is going to pay real dividends. Horne can really shoot it. He "gets buckets" as Miles put it in his postgame. He seems to be having some trouble adjusting to the speed of Division I basketball, but if you can put it in the basket, there's a decent chance you'll get some court time.
@Rick: I'm trying to stay realistic with Roby, but man is it hard not to be excited about him. He can do a little big of everything. Seemed to be in total control of his game. Now, we'll see how he looks when things start to get tough, but he's the type of guy Nebraska hasn't had for a while.
@ND: I honestly haven't heard anything about the Arop situation since I took this beat over three weeks ago. It was an odd deal, for sure, but I don't think it's something that will turn guys off from coming here. If anything, that extra spot opening up probably makes Nebraska a more attractive option for some guys who want the chance to come in and play early.
@Stew3000: I was actually looking into this last night, and it doesn't look like it. All the major recruiting sites still have him going to Nebraska, which is obviously inaccurate. I imagine he'll take his time with it and make a decision in the spring. The regular signing period for basketball is April 12-May 17, so it could be awhile before we hear anything.
Yep, Jordy will help on defense, for sure. Has to work hard on staying out of foul trouble, but 6-11 is 6-11. If he can give you 7 points, 6 rebounds and 2 blocks a night, like he did in the exhibition, I think that's pretty good. Morrow looked great. I think this is what coaches saw in him when they recruited him, but he was so dinged up last year he never really got to show his full skill set. He's healthy this year, and that little 15-footer is a nice weapon. He's one of the toughest guys on the team too, which never hurts. I was surprised by Taylor as well. Six turnovers like he had Monday night is way too many, especially in an exhibition, but having a 6-5 guard who can get into the paint and score never hurts.
@Stewpac3000: I think it's going to be tough for him to get on the court in anything more than a limited role, especially as the season goes on and the younger guys gain experience. I know the coaching staff loves him and he's tougher than nails, but there is just so much skill at those wing spots right now. I can see he and Horne battling for that last spot in the rotation, and right now Horne looks like a better offensive player. If he gets better on defense, that will be tough for Nick to overcome.
@Rick: This coaching staff seems to have a knack for finding unknown guys, and we all know the history they have with transfer guards. If Taylor develops into something anywhere in the neighborhood of what Terran Petteway and Andrew White III turned into, I think he could be a really nice piece for them. And you're right. The new guys will have to play defense. Scoring 98 points is fun and looks good on the stat sheet, but you've got to be able to get stops if you want to go anywhere. I think that's the area that may hold Horne back, at least early on.
@Rick: Glad to do it. Thanks for stopping by!
Ok guys, time is running out. If you have any other thoughts, questions, etc., go ahead and share them now. We'll be shutting things down here in a few minutes.
Thanks to everyone who stopped by. We'll chat again next Wednesday. By that time Nebraska will be two games into its season. Hard to believe it's already here. See you next week!