Today is a pretty exciting day for the state of Nebraska. Both Creighton University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln are in the men’s NCAA Tournament. The Nebraska women won the B1G Tournament and also picked up a 4 seed in the women’s NCAA Tournament (and if they can find a way to win two games they will play a home game, likely against power UConn, as Lincoln’s PBA will host the region’s sweet 16). But the state’s two largest Division I men’s programs are not just in the same tournament; they are in the same bracket. If both win they would face each other in the second round.
Creighton enters as the 3rd seed in the West Region. They are led by the three time All American Doug McDermott.
To commemorate this occasion, I want to take you back to two posts I authored. The first post was during McDermott’s sophomore year. I said then:
Two years later I think its safe to say we can put that debate to rest. Doug McDermott is the best player to ever play for Creighton. And a simple google search demonstrates that the rest of the country has certainly taken notice. As for his future, I think it is also safe to say that, barring injury, he will play a long time at a high level in the NBA.
Several months after that post about Doug McDermott, Nebraska announced the decision to hire a relatively unknown coach named Tim Miles. The hire was met with some skepticism and some particularly harsh assessment from a couple of well thought of former players. Nonetheless, following the announcement I wrote:
To me this experience is exactly what NU needed. Miles knows what it means to operate from a disadvantage. But, as he said, he has succeeded in overcoming those disadvantages at every step. He has spent his entire career as an architect of basketball programs. I believe he will construct NU into a winner.
Well, one B1G coach of the year award later NU is dancing for the first time since 1998. Yes, these are exciting times to be a basketball fan in Nebraska.