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Nebraska at Illinois, 2/18

Nebraska players Tanner Borchardt (from left), Thorir Thorbjarnarson and Jack McVeigh carry off a teammate in a skit after a shot was made during the Huskers' game against Illinois on Sunday in Champaign, Ill.

The Bench Mob is taking over the world.

At least on social media.

Nebraska basketball's ever-evolving and elaborate bench celebrations went to another level late Tuesday night and into Wednesday as the official Twitter accounts of ESPN, Sports Center, Ballislife and others shared videos of the sideline antics after Nebraska's win over Indiana.

As the Huskers (21-9, 12-5 Big Ten) have continued to build their case for a NCAA Tournament bid behind the play of rotation players James Palmer Jr., Isaac Copeland, Isaiah Roby, Glynn Watson, Anton Gill, Evan Taylor, Jordy Tshimanga and Thomas Allen, the guys watching from the sideline have developed their own following.

Scholarship players Jack McVeigh, Tanner Borchardt and Thorir Thorbjarnarson, along with walk-ons Justin Costello, Johnny Trueblood, Malcolm Laws do the heavy lifting when it comes to the celebrations, with McVeigh recently asking on a podcast he hosts for suggestions from Husker fans.

By 5 p.m. a video in tweet from ESPN's official account had more than 1.68 million views.

The tweet from @Ballislife, wasn't far behind, with 1.66 million views, and was later retweeted by NBA all-star Bradley Beal, North Carolina guard Joel Barry II and Nebraska wide receiver Stanley Morgan Jr., among others.

A tweet later in the day from ESPN's SportsCenter account matching Nebraska's bench against the infamous Monmouth bench mob from two season ago was approaching 350,000 views

And a second tweet from ESPN around 11:30 a.m. was sitting near 159,000 views.

In total, that's nearly 4 million total views for the guys on the bench, and a whole new level of exposure for a Nebraska hoops program often operating in the shadows of its conference brethren.

While some were critical of the bench celebrations in the minutes after Nebraska's win, they were quickly overwhelmed by those supporting the group. Among them, the Huskers who see the majority of the playing time.

The stage will be at its biggest Sunday, when Nebraska closes the regular season against Penn State at Pinnacle Bank Arena. The game, scheduled for a 4:15 p.m. tip, has massive implications for the Huskers.

They figure to have about 16,000 fans and one rowdy bench on their side.

Reach the writer at 402-473-7436 or cbasnett@journalstar.com. On Twitter @HuskerExtraCB.

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Husker basketball reporter

A Ravenna native, Chris covers the University of Nebraska men's basketball team and assists with football coverage. He spent nearly 10 years covering sports at the Kearney Hub and nearly four years at the Springfield News-Leader in Springfield, Mo.

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