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December 3, 2012

Hoops Gameday: Nebraska vs. USC

Nebraska Cornhuskers

vs. USC Trojans
Monday, Dec. 3, 2012 - 7:06 p.m. CT
TV: Big Ten Network / RADIO: IMG Husker Sports Radio Network

USC Trojans (3-3, 0-0 Pac-12)
Streak: Lost 2
Last Game: Lost to No. 25 San Diego State 66-60
G Jio Fontan (leads team with 6.0 assists per game) Sr. 6-0 175
G J.T. Terrell (leading scorer with 12.5 points per game) Jr. 6-3 185
G Byron Wesley (averaging 8.7 ppg and 3.3 rebounds per game) So. 6-5 210
F Eric Wise (second-leading scorer at 11.3 ppg and rebounder at 6.7 rpg) Sr. 6-6 240
C Dewayne Dedmon (leads team with 7.7 rpg) Jr. 7-0 255

Nebraska CornhuskersNebraska Cornhuskers (5-1, 0-0 Big Ten)
Streak: Won 1
Last Game: Defeated Wake Forest 79-63
G Benny Parker (had 8 points, 4 assists and 4 steals at Wake Forest) Fr. 5-9 164
G Ray Gallegos (Ranks 19th in Big Ten at 13.0 ppg, 3rd with 2.8 3s per game) Jr. 6-2 181
G Dylan Talley (Ranks 7th in Big Ten at 15.8 ppg, 10th at 6.4 rpg) Sr. 6-5 216
F Brandon Ubel (leads team with 14.8 ppg and 6.8 rpg) Sr. 6-10 234
C Andre Almeida (had first career double-double vs. Wake Forest) Sr. 6-11 314

Keep up the shooting

Nebraska is coming off its most impressive half of offense in years with its second half display against Wake Forest. The Huskers hit 18 of their first 21 shots, which was more than enough to put the Demon Deacons away for good. Now the key is finding a way to keep that hot shooting going. Getting that kind of production out of Ray Gallegos and Andre Almeida, who had 20 points each, is absolutely vital to doing that, as the Huskers need all five of their starters to play huge roles in their offensive production.
Pressure the ball

Southern Cal's offense has struggled all season, and Nebraska would serve itself quite well to make life as difficult as possible for the Trojans' shooters tonight. The Huskers did a good job against Wake Forest of making the Demon Deacons settle for jumpers and not get many easy lay-ups, and that should once again be the strategy against a poor shooting USC squad that is hitting just 40 percent of its shots on the year. The Huskers are also forcing a modest 12.3 turnovers per game, and they could go a long way to make life easier by creating a few more tonight.
Impress Webster

It's no secret that tonight's game takes on an even bigger level of importance because of the presence of arguably the highest-profile potential commit of the 2013 class, New Zealand guard Tai Webster. Webster will be taking in his very first NU game experience, and putting on a show for the verbal commit would be a definite help in getting him to submit his Letter of Intent while he's in Lincoln. The plan is that if he and his family like what they see during their visit, he'll hand in his LOI and officially be a Husker. A big win and a great atmosphere in the Devaney Center could help seal the deal.

Head coach Tim Miles on USC's 3-2 start:

"They expected a big year, and I don't think they like where they're at. They've struggled offensively. They're defensively strong, and they're strong in post defense too from what I've seen just generally. That kind of worries me because we've been able to go in there on people, and when we can establish that inside thing then throw in a few outside shots, we've been alright."
Senior guard Ray Gallegos on how Nebraska has gotten off to a 5-1 start:

"It just starts in practice. As far as Deverell Biggs and those guys, they do a good job of running the scout and helping us prepare for the next game. So it just starts in practice."

Nebraska 65-64

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