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Apparently Tim Miles has had enough.

Enough of the losing, enough of the frustration — we can only hope he's had enough of wearing the awful red-and-white checkered sweater he wore last weekend.

But that's a story for another day.

Today, with two weeks left in the regular season — one that has gone so far off course for the Cornhuskers few remember they were ranked No. 21 before the year started — Nebraska has apparently hit its bottom.

After an embarrassing 74-46 home loss to Iowa on Sunday, coach Tim Miles decided his team could no longer come into its own locker room.

"There will be chains on the doors locking it from the outside," Miles said, "until further notice."

That's no small punishment considering how impressive the facilities are at the Hendricks Training Complex, which opened in 2011. It has iPads at ever locker, big-screen televisions, a pool table, smoothie bar and heated towel racks — just to name a few of the amenities.

But apparently it has led the Cornhuskers — the surprise NCAA Tournament team from last season under the witty and upbeat coach — to become soft.

Or, at least, that's the way Miles sees it.

"You never want to throw your players under the bus," Miles said. "But that was beyond disappointing. That's not what we represent. We quit easily, and that's a great disappointment.

"It's unacceptable. You have to have a great amount of pride when things are not going well and we just didn't show any pride."

For years — well before Nebraska joined the Big Ten — a .500 season and a blowout loss late in February hardly would draw much attention. But this team was supposed to be different.

The Cornhuskers were returning nearly their entire lineup from last year's team that reached the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1998. The roster included last season's Big Ten scoring champ, Terran Petteway.

It was enough for the Cornhuskers to be picked to finish second in the Big Ten by one sportswriter, though that was as much about every team not named Wisconsin being unproven in some manner or fashion. But Nebraska looked to be the best of that bunch.

It didn't take long, however, for things to go in the wrong direction.

Nebraska lost at Rhode Island in its third game, and after falling to Creighton, it dropped a home game to Incarnate Word. A loss at Hawaii capped a miserable nonconference that never got better once Big Ten play began.

"Perplexing is a good word," Miles said of his team that has lost five straight and seven of eight. "Disappointing is a better word. I honestly didn't expect this. When's the last time you saw a 50-20 game? … 50-20, for crying out loud. It was about that time I started thinking about recruiting."

It might seem like Miles has thrown in the towel, but he's simply too good of a coach. He has been successful at every level.

Now, he must figure out a way to get the Cornhuskers back.

Keeping them from their cushy locker room is one of many buttons he's pushed, and after the loss wondered if he could borrow from his Southwest Minnesota State days — his team picked up trash at a Renaissance festival for three days to pay for shoes.

"If I had the option I would do that tonight, tomorrow and the next day and pay back the fans the cost of their ticket," he said.

Crunch time

There are plenty of big games this week as Wisconsin looks to lock up a championship and a handful of others jockey for conference tournament position.

Wisconsin has one of its toughest weeks, going to Maryland today and closing Sunday at home against Michigan State. Win both, and the Badgers are the champs.

Meanwhile, Maryland and Michigan State are tied for second with Purdue, and none has a cakewalk.

In addition to facing Wisconsin, Maryland hosts Michigan on Saturday and Michigan State hosts Minnesota on Thursday. Purdue gets a chance to prove it belongs by hosting Rutgers on Thursday, then closing with a huge game at Ohio State on Sunday.

Illinois at Iowa on Wednesday is another to watch on the NCAA Tournament bubble.

mcharboneau@detroitnews.com

twitter.com/mattcharboneau

Standings

Conf.

Overall

W

L

W

L

Wisconsin

13

1

25

2

Maryland

10

4

22

5

Michigan State

10

4

19

8

Purdue

10

4

18

9

Indiana

9

6

19

9

Ohio State

8

6

19

8

Iowa

8

6

17

10

Illinois

7

7

17

10

Michigan

7

8

14

13

Minnesota

5

10

16

12

Nebraska

5

10

13

14

Northwestern

4

10

13

14

Penn State

3

12

15

13

Rutgers

2

13

10

18

TUESDAY

Wisconsin at Maryland, 7 p.m. ESPN

WEDNESDAY

Indiana at Northwestern, 7 p.m. BTN

Illinois at Iowa, 9 p.m. BTN

THURSDAY

Minnesota at Michigan State, 7 p.m. BTN

Nebraska at Ohio State, 7 p.m. ESPN

Rutgers at Purdue, 9 p.m. ESPNU

SATURDAY

Michigan at Maryland, noon ESPN

Iowa at Penn State, 6 p.m. ESPNU

Northwestern at Illinois, 7 p.m. BTN

SUNDAY

Michigan State at Wisconsin, 4 p.m. CBS

Purdue at Ohio State, 7:30 p.m. BTN

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