Fred Hoiberg

Fred Hoiberg wants to get the fans involved for the start his first season coaching Nebraska basketball.

LINCOLN — Nebraska basketball will start its 2019-20 season with an Opening Night event on Sept. 27 at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

On the Friday before Nebraska football plays Ohio State, Fred Hoiberg will host a free event to the public at PBA that will include a live scrimmage and a music act. That artist will be announced at a later date.

Fans can can start registering for tickets in the lower bowl on July 15 at 10 a.m. by visiting

The event goes with what many major college basketball programs do to celebrate the beginning of practice. At Kansas, Bill Self hosts Late Night at the Phog. At Kentucky, it is called Big Blue Madness.

In the past, Nebraska has held a scrimmage open to the public to begin the season, but it has been sparsely attended. It generally included a scrimmage, a dunk contest and live play-by-play by former coach Tim Miles.

The branding of this event and the live musical element indicates Hoiberg wants to start his first season with a new ritual common for basketball schools.

“We wanted to kick off basketball season with an event that allows our fans to have a good time and get an early preview of our team as we start practice,” Hoiberg said in a press release. “We hope this event is not only the start of a new tradition for our program, but also the start of (a) festive weekend with the Husker football team hosting Ohio State the following day.”

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Chris Heady covers Husker football and is the Nebraska men's basketball beat writer. He started at The World-Herald in 2017. Follow him on Twitter @heady_chris. Email:

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