LINCOLN — Even with an immediate need for size inside, don’t be shocked if Nebraska men’s basketball signs a point guard this spring.
The Huskers continue to show strong interest in 6-foot-1, 170-pound Trey Dickerson from Williston (N.D.) State College. Assistant Craig Smith has traveled to see Dickerson, and now coach Tim Miles is expected to fly in to look.
Dickerson averages 20.2 points, 6.0 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 1.6 steals for Williston (19-4). In a triple-overtime game earlier this season, he had 38 points, nine rebounds and six assists.
The Queens, N.Y., native left home during high school under the advice of his mentor — former North Carolina star and 10-year NBA player Kenny Smith.
Dickerson eventually played in prep schools in Los Angeles and Dallas before signing a letter of intent for this season with Murray State. But he left school in August and went to Williston. He will have three years of Division I eligibility left.
Dickerson made an unofficial visit to Arizona State and had earlier interest from Iowa. He is drawing more high-major interest by the day with Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Missouri and North Carolina State now pursuing.
Nebraska’s point guard inconsistency was evident in Thursday’s 58-54 loss at Penn State.
Junior Deverell Biggs, freshman Tai Webster and sophomore Benny Parker combined to hit 3 of 12 shots while committing seven turnovers to four assists. Biggs was stripped twice at critical times in the final 65 seconds.
The coaches aren’t blaming Biggs for the loss.
“We don’t win the Ohio State game without Deverell Biggs,” Miles said Friday. “Dev is a home run hitter.”
For the season, the three Husker point guards have shot 38.9 percent from the field and combine for an assist-to-turnover ratio of 1-to-1.
Turnovers were a teamwide problem against Penn State. The last-place Nittany Lions outscored 11th-place Nebraska 22-1 off turnovers, and 14-0 off what Miles calls “catastrophic” errors — turnovers or quick shots that lead directly to an opponent getting in transition.
Said Miles: “We couldn’t have made many more mistakes the last minute and a half of the game.”
Following Monday’s win over No. 17 Ohio State with a clunker at Penn State wasn’t something that was evident during preparation. The coaches who watched warmups, Miles said, thought things were fine.
“It’s what happens when you get smacked in the mouth,” Miles said. “What happens when you’ve had the lead all night and they take the lead?
“Do you take a bad shot or put your head down and try to make a play? Or do you run the play? For the most part, we did pretty well.”