The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, March 16, 1993, Page 7, Image 7

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    tuB&ton ^ SPORTS
Kitey Tmperley/DN
° Nebraska freshman Jason Christie competes in a meet earlier this
year. The Comhusker men scored a season-high 288 last weekend
against New Mexico and will compete in the Big Eight
Championships this weekend.
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Gymnasts post highest
regular-season score
By Jeff Griesch
Staff ntoorfr
The Nebraska men’s gymnastics team is
peaking at the right time.
The Comhuskers scored a season high in
defeating New Mexico 288.20-279.35 at
Albuquerque, N.M. cm Sunday.
In their final tuneup before the Big Eight
Championships, the third-ranked Huskers
recorded their highest regular-season score
Nebraska coach Francis Allen said the
judges were scoring the events high com
pared to Big Eight judges.
“The kids performed exquisitely, but the
judging was easy,” Alien said. “I think the
judging was the way it should be judged;
they kind of kill us at home.”
Allen said routines that would normally
receive a 9.3 or 9.4 at home got a 9.7 at New
Allen said the higher scores will give the
Huskers confidence going into the confer
ence meet, but he also said Nebraska should
not count on another record setting perfor
Women prepared
to turn on heat
in tourney game
By Derek Samson
Staff Reporter -
After days of anticipation, the Nebraska
women’s basketball team is ready for its first
round game against San Diego Wednesday
night at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
“Our emotions are going to be flying high,”
senior Rissa Taylor said. “It means a lot for us
to get it at home. We’re more comfortable
playing in front of our fans.”
The Comhuskers finished the season 22-7
and finished second in both the Big Eight
regular season and in the Big Eight Tourna
“I feel like we got a great draw with San
Diego coming in here,” Sara Offringa said.
“They won 16 games and are in the tournament,
so we know they are a quality team.”
Nebraska point guard Meggan Yedsena said
playing an unfamiliar team was what made the
NCAA Tournament a great competition.
“We’re going to be able to do what we have
done all year,” she said. “We don’t know a lot
about them and they don’t know a lot about us.
I think that is what makes the postseason so
A Nebraska win will send Nebraska to Los
Angeles to play Southern Cal. A game with the
Women of Troy would be another winnable
game, according to some Huskers.
“We’re taking it one game at a time, but if we
do win, we know we can beat USC,” Yedsena
said. “If we show up and play our best, we can
See Related Story on Page 8
play with anyone in the nation.”
After practice Monday, Nebraska watched
the film of its Big Eight Championship game
with Kansas. The Jayhawks beat Nebraska 64
60 to capture the Big Eight tournament title.
“I think we will learn from our mistakes in
that game. We won’t be looking past anyone,”
Offringa said. “We’ve just got to use the inten
sity that Kansas had against us and we’ll be
right with everyone in die tournament.”
Taylor said the Kansas game also showed
areas that will need improvement
“We’ 11 have to play better defense and settle
down some (Hi offense,” Taylor said. “We have
to worry about it a game at a time.”
The Huskers’ preparation for San Diego
only consisted of two practice days because the
pairings were announced Sunday.
“It might be better to have a few more days
to get ready, but I would rather just get out there
and play,” Taylor said.
Several players said Big Eight teams were
treated poorly in the past by the selection
committee. Kansas, Oklahoma State and Colo
rado, along with Nebraska, all earned spots in
the 48-team tournament.
“When I heard OSU was in and we weren’t
picked yet, I was getting a litde nervous,”
Yedsena said. “We got pul in a great spot,
though. From the way the brackets look, the
West seems like it is the best bet.”
Two athletes win top spots
at indoor track meet finals
By Derek Samson
Staff Reporter
Shannel le Porter and Kevin Coleman proved
to be the best as each took first place at the
NCAA indoor championships in Indianapolis
last weekend.
Porter won the400-meter dash with a time of
52.82, while Coleman won his second consecu -
live indoor shot put title.
“Any time you win a national champion
ship, you have to be pleased,” Coleman said. “1
didn’t throw as well as I wanted to, but I’m
happy to win it”
Coleman went into the meet as a strong
favorite in the shot put and did not show any
signs of a letdown.
“I like being an underdog, but I like the
pressure (as the favorite). It just adds fuel to the
fire,” Coleman said. “Unfortunately, there
wasn’t much of a fire. Maybe just a real small,
little flame.”
Coleman, a senior from Elgin, 111., said the
thought of being upset never crossed his mind.
“There is always a possibility that some
thing like that can happen, but that’s not at all
what I thought about,” Coleman said. “My
mind is always on winning. (Losing) is the last
thing you want to think about, especially when
you go into a national meet.”
Nebraska sent four athletes to the national
meet to compete in the shot put. Paulette
Mitchell, Krista Maderand Andy Meyer joined
Coleman in the shot put.
“That says we’ve got a very strong program.
It says a lot for the coach as well as the athletes,”
Coleman said. “The athletes are out there bust
ing their butts, and our coach has done a hell of
a job turning mediocre throwers into something
that good.”
Porter, a junior from Cheyenne, Wyo., went
into the finals with the slowest qualifying time.
Three other competitors earned All-Ameri
can honors for finishing in the top eight of their
events. The Huskers’ All-Americans were
Mitchell, high jumper Cris Hall and triple
jumper Robert Thomas.
In the team standings, the women finished
tied for 12th, while the men came out in the
15th spot.
“It was like any meet,” Coleman said. “We
had people do better than expected and people
do somewhat less than what was expected of
Some Big Eight teams don t merit NCAA play
March madness came in like a lion.
And nowhere was it more evident
than right here in the good old Big
First the seventh-seeded Missouri
Tigers won the Big Eight Tourna
ment. They defeated the conference’s
No. 5 team, Kansas State, in the fi
Then the NCAAToumamentCom
mittee selected six Big Eight teams to
play in the big dance.
They left out Oklahoma.
That constitutes lionlike madness.
How did it all happen?
The same answer can be given to
all questions: The Big Eight Confer
ence had an off year.
Missouri was able to put itself in a
position to win the conference be
cause the entire conference was down
this year. Besides Kansas, there was
no real powerhouse taking command
of league play. This left the door open
for the lower-seeded teams.
Likewise, Kansas State was able to
make it to the finals because there was
no clear-cut front-runner. The Wild
cats’ upsetover Kansas was abig win,
but even Kansas had been stumbling
lately. With the exception of Colo
rado, the rest of the teams were
clumped together in a mass of medi
And finally, six teams don’t de
serve logo the NCAA because the Big
Eight had an off year. Three teams do.
Kansas deserves to go, Oklahoma
State fought its way to the top of the
conference throughout the season and
Missouri goes based on its Big Eight
Tournament win.
But that’s where the line probably
should have been drawn.
Oklahoma probably didn ’ t deserve
an NCAA berth. Their 19-11 record
was impressive, but the teams they
played were not. Three of their victo
ries were over non-Division I schools.
So Oklahoma is out, but did Kansas
State, Iowa State, and maybe even
Nebraska deserve to follow in their
Twenty wins is usually considered
an automatic berth, but in Nebraska’s
case, only a couple could actually be
counted as quality wins. The win over
Kansas definitely counts. The win
over Oklahoma counted until they
didn’t make it into the NCAA. Should
two wins over Missouri really count
as quality wins? Or how about the win
over Kansas State, which was 17-9
before its Big Eight Tournament
magic? The list of quality wins prob
ably ends there.
Iowa State’s identical 20-10 record
was also enough to get them into the
tournament. The Huskers and the
Cyclones split their two regular sea
son matchups. Like the Huskers, the
Cyclones racked up a quality win
against Kansas on their own home
court, but other than that win, Iowa
State’s Big Eight season was rather
bleak. The Cyclones’ only Big Eight
win on the road was over last-place
And then comes Kansas State,
which was in a must-win situation in
their first-round matchup against the
Huskers. And they did it. They had
only 17 wins before they pulled off
some wins at the Big Eight Tourna
ment, and now they are a No. 6 seed
in the NCAA.
Give the Wildcats credit. They
won when they had to. Unfortunately,
Kansas State has no offense, and they
are in the tourney based only on their
The Big Eight is sending quantity
to the NCAA, but unfortunately it is
not sending quality.
Don’t expect the Big Eight teams
to make too much of a splash in the big
They will make their appearances
and go out quietly.
It could be as bad as last season,
when the NCAA took six Big Eight
teams, and only one made it past the
second round.
The teams who played consistently
well all season long like Indiana,
Kentucky, North Carolina and Michi
gan will be the ones playing in New
Orleans in April.
Don’t expect the Big Eight teams
to make any Cinderella runs.
After all, March came in like a lion
in the BigEight. And it will go out like
a lamb.
Arth is a senior news-editorial mqjor and
a Dally Nebraskan senior reporter.