As if Nebraska’s 62-47 loss at No. 2 Michigan on Wednesday night weren’t bad enough, head coach Tim Miles revealed today that the Cornhuskers also suffered a key personnel loss.
Miles announced that senior forward Brandon Ubel will miss Sunday’s game at No. 22 Michigan State with a fractured elbow that was suffered in the defeat. Ubel is Nebraska’s third-leading scorer and leading rebounder, as he’s currently averaging 12.1 points and 6.8 rebounds per game
Sunday’s contest is the Huskers’ third Big Ten road game against a ranked opponent this season (lost the opener at Ohio State). At 0-3 in conference play the last thing the Huskers can afford is the loss of a key contributor like Ubel.
Ubel played 37 minutes on Wednesday, tallying six points and ten rebounds, and if not for his efforts on the glass the 15-point margin would have been larger. Michigan out-rebounded Nebraska 47-30, scoring 19 second-chance points off of 16 offensive rebounds.
Without Ubel the Huskers will look to hold their own on the boards with Michigan State, a team that has rebounded nearly 37% of its missed shots this season.
Players such as center Andre Almeida, David Rivers and Shavon Shields become even more important members of the Nebraska rotation when it comes to rebounding as a result of Ubel’s injury. Ubel, according to Miles, is “highly doubtful” for Nebraska’s game against Purdue next Wednesday.
In addition to the injury news on Ubel, Miles also announced that guard Mike Peltz will miss the remainder of the season due to a knee injury. Peltz, who has been playing since the start of the season with a partially torn patellar tendon, will undergo surgery to repair the issue.
The 6-foot-3 guard averaged 10.3 points per game, while shooting 42 percent from three, as a freshman. He, along with Malcolm Hill and Michael Thorne Jr., is one of three returning players who averaged double figures last season.
This could prove to be a make-or-break year for John Groce, who enters his fifth season at the helm. He guided the Illini to an NCAA Tournament in his first season, but hasn’t been back since.
The key for the Illini is health. Abrams gives them experience and leadership, but it won’t be a surprise if there’s some rust in his game after spending the past two seasons on the sideline. Having a healthy Coleman-Lands will help stabilize the backcourt, while Hill, an all-conference caliber forward, and Thorne anchor the frontcourt.
Like Alkins, Jones was a sought-after scorer. The 6-foot-4 two-guard was rated No. 69 overall in the Class of 2016 by Rivals. He picked Indiana over offers from Cal, Cincinnati, Georgetown and more than a dozen other high-major programs.
Jeter, the 6-foot-10, played in a reserve role as a freshman, averaging 1.9 points and 1.9 rebounds per game last season. He will be part of a loaded frontline that includes heralded freshmen Harry Giles and Marques Bolden, as well as redshirt senior Amile Jefferson, who returns to the lineup following a foot injury.
The greatest player in Auburn program history will honored with a statue outside of the team’s home arena.
The university announced that Charles Barkley, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer, will be the fourth athlete to be given a statue, joining Heisman Trophy winners Bo Jackson, Pat Sullivan and Cam Newton.
“It just means a great deal to me,” Barkley said in a statement. “Being a kid from Alabama, going to Auburn. I think everybody knows what Auburn means to me. It’s going to be pretty cool.”
Barkley, currently working as an analyst for TNT, was the SEC Player of the Year in 1984, as well as a second team All-American. He averaged 14.1 points and 9.6 rebounds per game in 84 appearances for the Tigers.