The Nebraska men's basketball team got a waiver approved, just not the one most fans were hoping for.
Transfers Dalano Banton and Derrick Walker, who are both sitting out this season, received waivers to travel with Nebraska to the Cayman Islands and practice with the team as it plays in the Cayman Islands Classic, NU coach Fred Hoiberg said Monday on the Husker Sports Radio Network.
Nebraska will take a chartered flight to the Caymans on Saturday, a day after hosting Southern at Pinnacle Bank Arena. The Huskers will be able to practice Sunday before taking on Washington State next Monday.
So, not only will Banton and Walker not have to spend Thanksgiving alone, they'll get to spend it in the tropics and get some practice time in while they're at it.
"With it being over a holiday, it will be great for those guys," Hoiberg said.
Nebraska men's basketball head coach Fred Hoiberg reacts after defeating South Dakota State for his first victory with the program.
Another player who will be on the trip, however, is still awaiting his status for this season.
Guard/forward Shamiel Stevenson, who transferred from Nevada, has yet to hear from the NCAA on his waiver for immediate eligibility, Hoiberg said.
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Stevenson averaged 8.5 points and 4.4 rebounds per game two seasons ago as a freshman at Pitt. After an offseason coaching change that saw Jeff Capel take over for Kevin Stallings, Stevenson played four games of his sophomore season before transferring to Nevada.
Then, after Nevada's season ended, Wolf Pack coach Eric Musselman left to take the Arkansas job, leaving Stevenson once again looking at the possibility of playing for a coach who didn't recruit him.
Stevens then transferred to Nebraska over the summer. He said earlier this fall he and Nebraska felt good about the waiver process. Both he and Hoiberg have said the Huskers are preparing as though Stevenson will be able to play sooner rather than later. But for now, they'll have to wait.
"He gives us a big, strong body. He's played at a high level, played at Pittsburgh as a freshman and had a very good freshman season," Hoiberg said. "I think we can kind of play him all over the floor. With our system, the way we run it, you have to be able to play all over the floor."
In other personnel news, Hoiberg said Nebraska is looking for "the best available player we can find" to fill the lone open scholarship the Huskers currently have for 2020.
That scholarship opened up when D'Andre Davis, a 6-foot-5 guard, backed off his verbal commitment and instead committed to Louisville.
Right now, Lincoln North Star senior Donovan Williams is Nebraska's only recruit in the 2020 class, with more spots potentially opening up through attrition.
"We've got some depth, but we're just trying to find the best player to fit our system. I don't know if it will be a specific position," Hoiberg said. "It's just something where we have to have players that can be interchangeable — guys that can help us win regardless of size.
"But, we're obviously undersized, and we need players at any position that can give us a size advantage."
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