Fresh off a big home win over Iowa, Nebraska rolled into Madison, Wisc., to take on the No. 16 Badgers. The Huskers had high hopes, but ran into a 3-point shooting buzz saw in the first half.
Dylan Talley led Nebraska with 21 points.
Wisconsin (20-8, 11-4 Big Ten) shot 8-for-13 from 3-point range in the first half en route to its highest first-half point total of the season and and easy 77-46 win over Nebraska, which made just one of its first 18 shots in the second half.
Nebraska (13-15, 4-11 Big Ten) weathered Wisconsin's initial surge, taking an 12-11 lead with 13:13 left in the first half following a jumper by Dylan Talley. But from that point, Wisconsin got hot from beyond the arc, completing a 27-4 run to take a 44-23 lead into halftime.
“You put a lot of preparation into these things and trying to get organized and I thought we weathered their first punch when it got out to 8-2, and we responded well, but the second punch kind of knocked us out,” Nebraska assistant Chris Harriman said on the Nebraska postgame radio show. “As the misses kept piling up, our defense got lax and we gave up easy looks, easy threes. We didn't respond well tonight. It's disappointing. Very disappointing.”
Wisconsin freshman Sam Dekker keyed a big part of the run, matching his career high with 19 points in the contest. Talley and Brandon Ubel did the bulk of the scoring for the Huskers, with Talley scoring a game-high 21 points and adding eight rebounds. Ubel added 10 points and six rebounds for the Huskers, who shot 32.8 percent from the floor.
Nebraska was again short-handed, as senior center Andre Almeida missed the game with a knee injury. The Huskers played just six players when the game was still in question. The Huskers' lacked scoring punch as Talley and Ubel accounted for all of Nebraska's points over a 20-minute stretch of the game.
Once Wisconsin started heating up beyond the arc, the Badgers started going inside for easy baskets against a short Nebraska front line. The Huskers also couldn't get anything going against Wisconsin's stout interior defense. Forwards David Rivers and Shavon Shields combined to finish 2-for-15 from the field in the game.
“We were as bad as the weather was here in town,” Nebraska head coach Tim Miles said. “It's disappointing. Early they jumped on us, and that's the one thing, if Wisconsin makes a lot of threes, they can hurt you in a lot of ways because their ball movement and player movement is so good … we just weren't ready to compete the way we needed to go be successful.”
Harriman said the coaching staff challenged the team after the game to show better effort and have more pride in itself. The Huskers have three regular season games left, with the next coming on the road at Illinois on Saturday afternoon.
“We told our guys we have to take more pride in the Nebraska jersey,” Harriman said. “We can't speak to anything that's happened in the past. We can only control what's going to happen. It's unacceptable to have that kind of effort tonight, and we told the guys that.”