Inconsistency has been a constant for the Nebraska basketball team this season. That was never truer than after Tuesday night's blowout victory against the Penn State Nittany Lions. The Huskers have shown a propensity for making sure their fans and the college football world in general never know what to expect but one thing is clear, the Cornhuskers are a good enough team that even the best schools in the Big 10 should be wary of going up against them on any given night.

Healthy and dangerous

The Nebraska basketball team started out the Big 10 conference season by going 3-0, with wins over Maryland and Indiana.

In a 74-66 loss to Northwestern, their best big man in Ed Morrow suffered an injury that would see him miss the better part of seven games. The team went 1-6 in that stretch. Furthering the Huskers' struggles were their two best scorers in Tai Webster and Glynn Watson getting banged up with various nicks and sprains as well. Morrow returned to the court against number 3 Wisconsin and the Huskers nearly toppled the Badgers, losing 70-69. Watson and Webster also appear to be getting healthier and a team that has wins against the 16th ranked Hoosiers and 20th ranked Purdue Boilermakers once again looks as good as anyone in the conference.

Youth in revolt

The real x-factor for the Nebraska basketball team is the rise of center Jordy Tshimanga.

The true freshman saw his minutes severely limited in the first half of the season as head coach Tim Miles attempted to get his big man acclimated to big-time power basketball. The center has seen those minutes increase in the last few weeks and he's responded by averaging 10.5 points per game and 8.5 rebounds per game.

Add in the contributions of the other freshman in Isaiah Roby and Jeriah Horne and the Huskers look deep and dangerous. With five games to go in the regular season, the Cornhuskers have a chance to raise some eyebrows. Add in the fact the team plays only one team the rest of the way with a winning conference record and suddenly going from 11-14 and 5-8 to 16-14 and 10-8 doesn't seem out of the question.

All bets are off

Should the Nebraska basketball team manage to go 5-0 or 4-1 to finish out the regular season, the Big Ten tournament season becomes suddenly interesting. The Huskers already have wins (or a one point loss) against most of the conferences best teams. Anything can happen in tournament time and while the Cornhuskers are certainly not a team that anyone should expect to win the conference tourney, they could make enough noise to serve notice at the end of the season.

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