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Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks Game Preview/Open Thread

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The Huskies look to close out their 4-game home stand with a clean sweep

NCAA Basketball: Nebraska Omaha at Louisville Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

The Essentials

Date: Sunday, 12/03/17

Tip-Off Time: 4:00pm PST

TV: Pac-12 Networks

Radio: KOMO 1000

Location: Hec Edmundson Pavilion at Alaska Airlines Arena, Seattle, Washington

Betting Line: Washington -12

Nebraska-Omaha 2017-18 Statistics:

Record: 1-7

Points For per Game: 77.1 ppg (117th)

Points Against per Game: 90.0 ppg (339th)

Strength of Schedule: 57th

Adjusted Offensive Efficiency: 102.1 (199th)

Adjusted Defensive Efficiency: 109.4 (303rd)

Note: The efficiency numbers are weighted with preseason expectations. They’re a better way to judge offense and defense than raw point totals right now (and always) given the small sample sizes.

Nebraska-Omaha Key Players:

C- Lamar Wofford-Humphrey, Sr. 6’9, 225: 8.0ppg, 4.9rpg, 0.8apg, 49% FG, 66.7% FT, 44.9% 3pt

Lamar is an above average offensive rebounder and one of three Omaha players at or taller than 6’8. He is able to step back and knock down a three-pointer although he’s only attempting just over one per game.

F- Zach Jackson, Jr. 6’5, 185: 16.3ppg, 4.9rpg, 0.6apg, 51.2% FG, 72.7% FT, 42.9% 3pt

Jackson is the Mavericks’ leading scorer and has been incredibly efficient from everywhere on the floor. Not only is he a knock down shooter but he’s also been very good at drawing fouls and getting to the line.

G- Daniel Norl, Sr. 6’3, 200: 14.1ppg, 5.4rpg, 2.1apg, 48.2% FG, 72% FT, 37.1% 3pt

Norl is essentially a poor man’s Zach Jackson as his percentages are just slightly lower across the board. The one exception is that he’s a much more willing passer so he’s less likely to stop the ball.

G- J.T Gibson, So. 6’3, 195: 9.4ppg, 2.5rpg, 2.5apg, 39.7% FG, 76.5% FT, 29.3% 3pt

Gibson is the only one of the guards on Omaha who is shooting below 30% from beyond the arc so if the Huskies ever leave one guy open, he’s the best choice.

G- K.J Robinson, So. 6’0, 190: 11.3ppg, 2.5rpg, 4.1apg, 42.2% FG, 50% FT, 50% 3pt

Robinson is a deadly shooter and a great passer but can struggle with turnovers. The Huskies will have the ability to pick off some of his passes by closing off the passing lanes.

The Outlook

It has been a tough road for the Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks to this point in the season. They’ve had to play road games at Oklahoma, Louisville, and TCU; all of which are top-25 KenPom teams at the time of this writing. They’ve played another trio of teams inside the top-200 as well. The fewest points they’ve allowed in any of those six games were 86 to #193 Tennessee Tech. Yikes.

The Mavericks are an extreme up-tempo team that will try to get up and down the floor and will gamble to get a steal even if it means instead of giving up a layup. Some of their defensive numbers are a little unlucky as teams are making 78% of their free throws against Omaha which is better than any single team shot last season. They’ve got a little more interior depth than some recent opponents but still shouldn’t have anyone who can reliably guard Noah Dickerson.

The Huskies just can’t seem to get matched up against a poor shooting team. Only one of their past 6 opponents, Eastern Washington, hasn’t been a top-100 team in 3-point % as Omaha shoots 38.1% from deep (and their next 2 opponents, Kansas and Gonzaga, shoot 45.2% and 39.7% respectively). They’re also nearly last in the country in percentage of their shots that get blocked so expect them to bomb it from outside and try to score layups in transition after steals. This team will be able to score against Washington but not enough to win the game.

Prediction

Washington Huskies- 87, Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks- 79

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