NEBRASKA: When Nebraska returned the core of a team that reached the 2014 NCAA tournament two years ago, it seemed as though the Huskers were a program on the rise. Having graduated leading scorer Shavon Shields and lost co-star Andrew White III via transfer, Nebraska will rely heavily on senior guard Tai Webster and an unproven collection of freshmen and sophomores. Webster has been inconsistent in college, but he might be poised to bust out after averaging 16.3 points and 9.7 rebounds for New Zealand last summer at the Olympic qualifying tournament.
Edmond Sumner is a big reason why Xavier is likely going to be a preseason top-10 team. On Saturday night, during Musketeer Madness, Sumner won the team’s dunk contest when he took off from the foul line. Sumner defeated freshmen Tyrique Jones and Quentin Goodin. J.P. Macura, the reigning Big East Sixth Man of the Year, took home the honors last year. The 6-foot-6 redshirt sophomore is coming off a debut season in which he averaged 11.0 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game.
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — A nearly life-size poster hanging inside Cook Hall, Indiana’s practice facility, is all that prominently remains of Yogi Ferrell’s All-America college career. What’s left is the nervous curiosity that comes with replacing an irreplaceable player. At a booster event this summer in southern Indiana, a young man broached the subject with coach Tom Crean during a question-and-answer session. “Is (Josh) Newkirk going to be the starting point guard?” the man asked. Crean, who fielded questions from the audience with three of his players behind him, responded first. “I don’t know,” he said playfully. “It’s up to him.” Newkirk, a Pittsburgh transfer who sat out last season per NCAA