Nebraska Basketball

Nebraska Basketball: New assistant Adam Howard brings defensive focus

USA Men’s Basketball vs Texas A&M-Commerce, Monday, November 29, 2021, in Mobile, Ala. (Scott Donaldson)

Nebraska basketball hired a new assistant coach on Monday. Former South Alabama assistant coach Adam Howard will join the staff.

Howard has spent the last four seasons at South Alabama. One of his primary roles was coordinating the team’s defense, specifically full-court and half-court sets.  Success has followed him during his time at South Alabama. The Jaguars went 21-12 in 2021-22.  They have never had a losing record with Howard on the staff, per a report from Michael Bruntz of 247Sports.

Howard is a replacement for former Husker assistant Matt Abdelmassih.

This move is an intriguing one, as Howard has seemed to have success in all levels of collegiate basketball. As a player, he played on three programs that made the postseason. One many will remember is Western Kentucky’s 2008 team that advanced to the Sweet 16.

Personally, I am intrigued by this hire. His success is certainly going to be a positive for the Nebraska basketball coaching staff. Howard has been a part of winning teams, and he knows what it takes to get the job done. That winning culture is something the Nebraska basketball program desperately needs right now.

In addition to the winning culture, his defensive focus could benefit Nebraska basketball. Nebraska gave up the most points per game in the Big Ten last season with 78.5. They were also last in the Big Ten in scoring margin at -5.3. Nebraska also gave up the most opponent rebounds per game on the season with 40.1.

Lastly, one of the biggest numbers that stands out to me is overall rebounds. They allowed 1,284 opponent rebounds on the season.

All of these are numbers that could improve with a defensive-minded assistant coach. Personally, I think this is a step in the right direction in terms of getting Nebraska to clean up their game defensively. There is little doubt that they can score. Their issues have more so been on the defensive end.

As  Fred Hoiberg looks to add fresh faces on the staff, Howard might be just what the program needs.

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