CHICAGO – Tim Miles, unaware of his fate, leaning against the wall outside the Nebraska storage space, his red tie loosely and his upper snap open.
Nebraska's coach had no idea about 32 minutes if he still had a job.
At his press conference after Nebraska 66-62 loss to Wisconsin in the quarter-finals of the Big Ten tournament, Miles said athletic director Bill Moos would release a statement soon on his future.
"I don't know what it is," said Miles. "It's out of my hands." And he meant it. Several basketball staff shrugged when they asked what was coming. Players in the locker room discussed what it would say. 1
"We are waiting for Sunday's announcement to see if we receive an invitation to participate in NIT. When our season is over, my evaluation of our men's basketball programs will end. "
Sign up for Big Red Today news
Get a daily Husker news report, recruit updates and break news in your inbox.
So Miles' future can rely on a NIT quay. Is Nebraska's 18-16 record enough to secure a bid? It's possible after consecutive victories over Iowa, Rutgers and Maryland.
But is there a number of gains in NIT that can save Miles jobs? He's not sure.  What is safe is in 32 minutes – from the last sum to the moment that Moo's statement struck e-mail inboxes – Miles and his staff were in the dark. Women worried about the bus. Players sulked in the locker room and lobbied for Miles to stay Miles hugged co-workers as saying goodbye.
Everything began when Miles took the podium about 12 minutes after the loss to Wisconsin.
"I am very proud of this group," Miles said. to be their coach. "
After talking for six minutes and six seconds, Miles was escorted by a large ten officials through the halls of the United Center. He was stopped three times. Once by Wisconsin coach Greg Gard. Then by a Minnesota assistant.
He shook hands. He was hugged.
Miles entered the storage room and appeared behind the coaching quarters on the opposite side of cabinets. He sat in a black leather chair and had a deep breath, a mirror on the opposite side of the room that reflected his every move.
On the other side of the wall, a shirtless James Palmer praised his coach.
"He's a good guy from the court. He takes care of us, says the senior." I think he should stay. "
Senior Glynn Watson, who scored 23 points against Wisconsin, has been with Miles longer than another player in the program, he lifted his head short and said he loves Miles.
"I think he is fighting for the guys no matter what," Watson said. "I think he is a good guy on the court and outside Court. I know he doesn't seem like always to the fans or anyone, but I think he should be able to stay. "
Junior Isaiah Roby, a potential draft of the NBA, sounded a long sigh when asked if he" would explain if Miles was released.
"Too early to say," he said.
They all told them to play in NIT. They would welcome it, even though it wasn't their ultimate goal this season.
At 4:44 pm, Miles was returning to the corridor and took the place for a last media interview. BTN's "The Journey" had a camera and a boom microphone near Miles & # 39; s face.
He leaned against an indigo silhouette of the Chicago skyline. He talked about his team, in his fight.
When asked if he was frustrated not to know his fate, he took a moment. His eyes became foggy.
"I have accepted the fact that I have run the race," he said.
Three minutes later, Moos released the statement.
The race may not be over for Miles. March 19, 2012: Tim Miles is introduced as Nebraska men's basketball after five seasons in Colorado State, where he led Rams to the NCAA tournament during his last season.