Published Saturday, December 15, 2012 AT 9:50 PM / Updated at 9:50 PM
Women’s basketball: NU at South Florida
Sam McKewon Omaha World-Herald

When: 1 p.m. Sunday
Where: Sun Dome, Tampa, Fla.
Radio: 107.3 FM in Lincoln, 93.3 FM in Omaha

F, Tahira Johnson, 6-1, Sr., 2.8
F, Tiffany Conner, 5-9, Sr., 4.8
G, Andrell Smith, 5-8, Sr., 14.8
G, Andrea Smith, 5-8, Sr., 15.4
G, Inga Orekhova, 6-2, Jr., 11.9

F, Hailie Sample, 6-1, So., 6.5
F, Emily Cady, 6-2, So., 9.2
F, Jordan Hooper, 6-2, Jr., 17.9
G, Lindsey Moore, 5-9, Sr., 15.1
G, Rachel Theriot, 6-0, Fr., 3.7

Scouting USF: Even though Nebraska has lost twice on the road already, the Bulls may be NU’s biggest challenge of all. USF returns four starters and 11 letterwinners from a team that qualified for the WNIT last year and is looking to break through to the NCAA tournament. The Bulls are led by the Smith twins, who do most of the team’s damage behind the 3-point line and should provide a tough matchup for the Huskers’ heretofore average perimeter defense. USF’s own perimeter defense has been pretty stingy, forcing 24 turnovers a game and holding opponents to 31 percent shooting from the floor. Nebraska’s the best team, however, that the Bulls have faced this season.

Scouting NU: Nebraska’s had a week to work on its perimeter defense after winning a thrilling one-point game over previously undefeated Florida State. Jordan Hooper scored a career-high 36 points — the kind of game that could shift into gear her campaign to become the Big Ten’s best player. NU continues to start Rachel Theriot, a savvy pass-first freshman, but sophomore Tear’a Laudermill has sparked Nebraska off the bench with her quick moves and intense defense. Coach Connie Yori’s still searching for all the pieces to make this team play at its best. Maybe a week off helped her — and the Huskers — find them.

Opening tips: Nebraska is 2-0 all-time against South Florida … The Huskers have two more nonconference games after Sunday. Both are at home.

About Sam McKewon

Sam McKewon covers Nebraska football for The World-Herald. Got a tip, question or rant? Good. Email him at And follow him on Twitter at @swmckewonOWH. And call him at 402.219.3790.