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.
Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
Tonight’s bubble action. This post will be updated as the games are completed.
Cincinnati at UCF, 7:00 p.m.
Pitt at No. 12 Miami, 7:00 p.m.
No. 25 Wichita State at Drake, 8:00 p.m.
Ole Miss at Florida, 9:00 p.m.
Georgia at No. 22 Kentucky, 9:00 p.m.
Arkansas at Mississippi State, 9:00 p.m.
GAME OF THE NIGHT: No. 10 West Virginia at No. 6 Kansas, 7:00 p.m.
The last time these two teams got together, West Virginia actually knocked off Kansas in Morgantown. It was the third time in the last three seasons that WVU has beaten KU at home. So there’s some revenge at stake here. But there’s also the whole Big 12 title race, which West Virginia currently leads. If the Mountaineers win tonight, they’ll be up by two games on Kansas with the tie breaker and just seven games left to play. The Jayhawks regular season title streak could be over if that happens.
THIS ONE’S GOOD, TOO: No. 8 Michigan State at No. 18 Purdue, 7:00 p.m.
We think the Spartans are back to their early season form after wins over Maryland (at home), Northwestern, Rutgers and Michigan. If Michigan State really wants to prove something to the college basketball world, they will go into West Lafayette tonight and get a win. Denzel Valentine vs. Raphael Davis will be fun.
FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR
- Pitt will pay a visit to No. 12 Miami in a game the Panthers could really use a win in. Pitt hasn’t been the most consistent team in the country and without adding a few quality wins they could be looking at the bubble.
- Duquesne will be paying a visit to No. 19 Dayton, who moved into a tie for first place in the Atlantic 10 thanks to VCU’s loss on Saturday.
- Georgia is right there on the bubble, and they will have a chance to try and push themselves into a better spot when they play at No. 22 Kentucky tonight.
- Creighton probably has to win out to have a shot of making the NCAA tournament, and that includes tonight, when they host No. 5 Xavier.
- No. 7 Virginia will be hosting Virginia Tech, who picked off the Wahoos in Blacksburg earlier this year.
THE REST OF THE TOP 25
- No. 1 Villanova at DePaul, 8:30 p.m.
- No. 25 Wichita State at Drake, 8:00 p.m.