Preview: Nebraska at Kansas

The Cornhuskers have shown signs of life since Kansas went up 39-6 in Lincoln on January 29th. They've won three of four, including road wins @Missouri and (in bizarre circumstances) @Texas Tech. Prior to this stretch, Nebraska had really struggled away from home against decent teams losing by at least 20 points per 100 possessions @Oregon (in Portland), @Oklahoma, and @Kansas State.


(Big 12 games only)

Team eFG% OR% TO% FT Rate FT% PPP
KU def 44.6 28.9 23.2 38.6 68.5 0.91
NU off 51.5 21.2 19.2 25.0 69.4 1.01

Nebraska got in trouble against Kansas in Lincoln because they missed a ton of shots and purposefully make little-to-no effort to attack the offensive glass. Unless they have another 60+ eFG% night (like the one they used to beat Kansas State on Tuesday night) in them, Doc Sadler's abdication of the offensive glass makes Nebraska poorly suited to contend against the Jayhawks because Kansas will almost certainly force more Nebraska turnovers than ususal.

With those two factors accounted for, there just aren't enough possessions left over in which the Cornhuskers can score enough to keep up. Those outstanding shooting performances that got me too excited about Nebraska in the non-conference season came against Creighton, Rutgers, and Western Kentucky: two decent mid-majors and a team almost as bad as Colorado.

Again, in Big 12 games only:

Team 2PT FG% 3PT FG%
NU off 45.3 36.8
KU def 44.0 30.3

I don't think the Nebraska players have it in them to go against the statistical record to the necessary degree for them to win in Allen Fieldhouse.


(Big 12 games only)

Team eFG% OR% TO% FT Rate FT% PPP
KU off 54.5 37.6 20.8 22.3 68.5 1.12
NU def 49.5 34.6 21.4 31.3 76.1 1.05

In the end, Kansas didn't shoot that well in Lincoln (50.8 eFG%) so any gains Nebraska might make on the defensive glass or in forcing turnovers will likely be negated by Kansas simply making shots at their average rate.

Prediction: Kansas 76 Nebraska 63