The Cornhuskers (8-7, 0-4 Big Ten) were looking for their first Big Ten win and were tied 54-54 when Bertrand hitting a running floater that gave Illinois (14-3, 3-1) a 56-54 lead.
Bertrand made 11 of his 12 shots in his third career start. Brandon Paul added 11 points for the Illini.
Nebraska led 25-22 at the half and held a 48-45 edge with just under 5 minutes to play.
Bo Spencer led Nebraska with 13 points. Toney McCray added 12 and Brandon Richardson scored 10.
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