There have been many great stories surrounding the Nebraska men’s basketball team this year with the historic season that they’ve had, and one of the more amusing ones has been the ‘Bench Mob’ celebrations.
Some have wondered where that all began, including CBS Sports Radio host Jim Rome, who had Nebraska head coach Tim Miles on as a guest on the ‘Jim Rome Show’ Tuesday. Miles said it likely began with Jack McVeigh.
The junior forward from Australia went from playing in 30 games last year to riding the bench this year. He hasn’t seen any significant playing time since getting in for 21 minutes in a loss at Penn State on Jan. 12.
Miles was so proud of McVeigh’s effort that night that he wanted his teammates sitting next to him to cheer him up.
“God, here’s Jack – he used to be a starter and now he’s at the end of the bench with the rest of us,” Miles said. “They were celebrating (Jack) that night so much at (Penn State) that they’re like, Jack, you’ve got to get in this with us. We’re going to do this Bench Mob thing,’ and I think it was their way of making Jack feel better.”
Videos of Nebraska’s bench mob have gone viral on social media, being retweeted by SportsCenter, the Big Ten Network and numerous others. McVeigh has been seen right in the middle of the celebration.
“I think it’s kind of cool, leaving a legacy or something,” senior walk-on and mob member Malcolm Laws said. “Just something that I can look back on and say, ‘Oh we started that, you know?'”
Get you a bench that can do both. pic.twitter.com/7yTGbNJeiH
— ESPN (@espn) February 21, 2018
Other Notes from the Interview
- Junior forward Isaac Copeland earned All-Big Ten Honorable Mention on Monday from the conference’s coaches and media. Copeland has scored in double figures in eight of Nebraska’s last nine games, including a team-high 17 points and 12 rebounds in Sunday’s win over Penn State. Copeland underwent back surgery last summer, and Miles said the transfer from Georgetown went above and beyond in his offseason recovery and rehab to get himself ready for the season.
“He’s done a lot of little, tedious work to get himself in position,” Miles said. “I mean, he started out the game (Sunday) night. We threw the ball to him at the top of the key on a pick-and-pop. He takes two dribbles and dunks over a 6-11 kid (Julian Moore), and the place went bananas.”
We're underway in Lincoln, and Isaac Copeland wants everyone to know.
— Big Ten Network (@BigTenNetwork) February 25, 2018
- Rome asked Miles about his teams’ “Hate Will Never Win” movement, which was started in early February in response to a video made by a UNL student who claimed to be the most active white nationalist in the state of Nebraska. The team has continued to wear their black warm up shirts with the adopted motto on them.
“I don’t think they’re trying to target any one person or one thing,” Miles said. “They’re saying, ‘Hey. This is wrong. All of this stuff that’s going on, this divisiveness, is wrong and we don’t need to hate each other.”
- The Big Ten Tournament starts Wednesday at Madison Square Garden in New York City; a week earlier than every major conference. Miles said he’s excited about playing in a historic venue in a top market, but expects the tournament will move back closer to home soon.
“I think at the end of the day that most of our tournaments are always going to be in the heart of Big Ten Country,” Miles said. “Indianapolis or Chicago. But, I think it’s good for us to be out there, especially a venue like Madison Square Garden.”
- You can listen to the full interview here.