clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Can The Nebraska Cornhuskers Still Make The NIT This Season?

New, 1 comment

The Huskers are hoping a late season turnaround can get the team to the NIT.

Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

The Nebraska Cornhuskers, frankly, haven't had a great season. Not only has the team struggled to record marquee wins consistently, but the Huskers are currently on a wrong skid, having lost six out of their last eight games - the only wins have come against underwhelming Penn State Nittany Lions and the Rutgers Scarlet Knights teams.

Even when Nebraska looked close to knocking off the Ohio State Buckeyes, which would have been a huge win for Nebraska considering its struggles - the team still dropped the game in overtime. Sure, Shavon Shields didn't play, but it was a disappointing loss that showed some of the major flaws of the Huskers, including underwhelming outside shooting, inconsistent free throw shooting, and mixed play on the boards.

In fact, one could legitimately argue that one of the few legitimate great moments over the last few weeks is included in the video below, when Tai Webster totally blows by Jae'Sean Tate. Other than that, there really has not been much working in the Huskers' favor over the past eight games.

Of course, not everything is dark clouds and pessimism. After all, freshman Jack McVeigh has been a nice contributor over the last few weeks, Tai Webster has had his moments, and the Huskers did record a few wins, including that win against Penn State, who is playing pretty well.

Still, can the Huskers put any positive spin on this season?

At this point, it's pretty hard to see Nebraska even making the NIT. After all, the Huskers are just 14-14 overall and are projected to lose all three of the team's remaining regular season games by KenPom. Still, if Nebraska can make a really nice run to end the season, maybe the team can make the NIT.

Think about it this way. If Nebraska beats just Northwestern and Penn State (far from guaranteed) over its next three games, the Huskers would finish the regular season at 16-15 overall and 8-10 in the Big Ten. Far from an NIT guarantee, but that would certainly be good enough to get the team in the discussion.

Then, Nebraska would have to pin its hopes to the Big Ten Tournament. The nice thing is that if Nebraska can finish at 2-1 over its next three games, it would avoid Wednesday and have a game against a quality team. Most likely, it would be someone like Michigan, Ohio State, or Purdue. The Huskers are winless against all three teams this season, but that's a chance to add a nice win to the resume.

Admittedly, this is probably asking a lot. As mentioned, Nebraska is likely to be an underdog in every remaining game this season, so even asking the team to win two games might be a stretch. However, nobody thought the Huskers would go into East Lansing and win either. After all, this is college basketball, where the unexpected happens.

Overall, this has been a year filled with plenty of disappointment for Husker fans. Nonetheless, with just a few games left this season, Nebraska can still put a stamp on this year.