The Cornhuskers, winless in the NCAA Tournament, will get a chance to end their March Madness misery

For all its success across multiple sports, Nebraska has the dubious distinction of being the only Power Five program to never win a game in the NCAA men's basketball tournament.

The Cornhuskers earned the No. 8 seed in the South Region on Sunday and will get their chance to break through on Friday against No. 9 seed Texas A&M in Memphis. This will be Nebraska's first appearance since 2014 and eighth overall.

“We've had a lot of firsts this year with this team and we're chasing another one,” coach Fred Hoiberg said. “It's an opportunity to go out and do something that's never been done before in the history of the program.”

The Huskers (23-10) have the most wins since Danny Nee's 1990-91 team went 26-8. The turnaround has happened under Hoiberg, who was on the hot seat two years ago after going 24-67 in his first three seasons.

Keise Tominaga, nicknamed “Japanese Stephen Curry” and the team’s top scorer, Arrived last year He became the most famous player. His flashy performances when he makes 3-pointers make him the biggest figure on the team without any projected NBA draft picks.

Three mid-major transfers joined the program this offseason and are in the starting lineup: Bryce Williams (Charlotte), Rink Mast (Bradley) and Josiah Alec (New Mexico). Juwan Gary provides a spark on both ends of the court and is the only player with NCAA Tournament experience, with Alabama in 2022.

The team still plays Hoiberg's entertaining five-point action game. The increased focus on defense has been a bigger factor in their improvement.

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Hoiberg, who led Iowa State to four straight NCAA tournaments from 2012-15, said he watched the selection presentation himself while his players gathered in a separate room.

“Everyone was downstairs yelling and screaming, and I was in my room alone,” he said. “I'll be honest, I'm a little overwhelmed with where we are right now, coming back at this time of year. That's what it's all about. That's why we came to Nebraska.”


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