The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, October 03, 1988, Page 7, Image 7
Husker offense played poorly during crackdown on Rebels, Osborne says By Jeff A pel Senior Reporter There wasn’t a legalized gambling line on Saturday’s matchup between Nebraska and the University of Nc vada-Las Vegas, but Cornhusker coach Tom Osborne still considered the game a great risk. Osborne said he's glad to get by UNLV because Nebraska got caught up in media talk during its 48-6 vic tory against the Rebels at Memorial Stadium. He said the Huskers let the media’s pre-season prediction that UNLV would finish last in the Big West Conference affect them. ‘ This is so hard. No matter how conscious you arc as a player you absorb some of those things,” Osborne said. ‘‘That happens in foot ball.” Osborne said UNLV didn’t get the respect it deserved entering the con test. Nevada law prohibits legalized gambling lines from being set on games in which schools from within the state are participating, while local oddsmakers declined to set a line. ‘i would like to congratulate UNLV,” Osborne said. “I think UNLV had a few players that really came to play.” Osborne said the hype and penal ties allowed the Rebels to battle Nebraska to a 7-0 deficit at the end of the 1st quarter. The Huskers were called lor eight penalties for 60 yards. 'We had so many penalties that it made it really hard to score,”Osborne said. “Still, wc need lo play better on offense. I thought our defense played reasonably well. I didn’t think offen sively we played very well.’’ Nebraska running back Ken Clark said the Huskers were disappointed by their offensive output. He said Nebraska, which has been outscorcd 48-30 in the 1st quarter this season, needs to sustain early drives. 7 would like to congratulate UNLV. I think UNLV had a few players that really came to play—’ —Osborne Clark said the Huskers arc confi dent they can turn the lst-quartcr woes around. He said the team’s prob lems can be attributed lo a lack of concentration. “I think it’s just a matter of every body gelling ready lo go,” he said. “We’ve got to start getting something out of the 1st quarter.” Nebraska fullback Tyreese Knox said the H uskers need to set the tone of the game early if they are going to turn around their early scoring problems. “I think sometimes guys arc stand ing around lackadaisical,” he said. “We have to make the game go our way.” Nebraska look a 7-0 lead with 2:06 remaining in ihc I si quarter when Clark capped off a five-play, 44-yard drive with a 2-yard scoring plunge. The drive was set up when quarter back Steve Taylor gained 20 yards on a draw play and Clark drove to the 2 yard line on an 11-yard run. The Huskers increased their lead to 14-0 early in the 2nd quarter when corncrback Cartier Walker scooped up a punt blocked by outside line backer Mike Croel and rambled 34 yards for a touchdown. Croel said it “felt good” to block the punt by UNLV’s Tony Rhynes <*ven though there is danger in per forming such a task. “You have to be careful,” Croel said. “The ball can go too low and hurt you.” Walker said he got lucky during the blocked punt because the ball bounced right into his hands. He then outran five defenders to the end /.one. Walker said the touchdown left him with a special feeling. “I fell like a kid in a candy store,” he said. Nebraska increased its lead to 20 0 midway through the 2nd quarter when running back Terry Rodgers look a pitch from Taylor and raced 20 yards for the end /one. The extra point by Husker kicker Gregg Barrios was blocked. The Huskers then used a pair of SeeUNLV on U) Butch Ireland/Daily Nebraskan Nebraska defensive back Tahaun Lewis battles UNLV wide receiver Keenan McCardell for a pass in the second half of the Cornhuskers’ 48-6 win against the Rebels Saturday at Memorial Stadium. McCardell caught the pass, but offsetting penalties nullified the catch. Osborne displeased with 42-point victory By Nick Hodge Stall Reporter A 48-6 victory against the Univer sity of Nevada-Las Vegas didn’t please Cornhusker coach Torn Osborne. Osborne said Sunday he was not happy with the overall performance of the Nebraska offense in the Husk ers 42-poinl victory against the Reb els Saturday at Memorial Stadium. He said the offense did not perform well even though it played better in the second half than it did early in the game. “I was certainly not pleased with the first half and probably not pleased overall offensively,” Osborne said. Osborne said many offensive troubles were the results of inade quate blocking. “1 think we blocked more poorly in this game than we have all year,” he said. Nebraska rolled up 201 yards of total offense while taking a 20-0 lead at halftime. Of those, 119 yards came from returns, including a 34-yard touchdown return by cornerback Cartier Walker on a blocked punt. Osborne said the high number of return yards lends to have a negative impact on the offense’s total yards. ‘‘Usually, when there’s quite a lot of return yards, it cuts down your total offense,” he said. “The blocked punt for a touchdown meant the offense had one less possession. So in some ways, the return yardage may have reflected in a little bit lower total offense.’’ Osborne said UNLV’s defense also caused some of Nebraska’s of fensive problems. He said the Rebels’ defense played well and had better athletic ability than what it had shown in previous games. Osborne said Nebraska’s defense didn’t play its best game of the season even though it did play reasonably well. The Husker defense limited the Rebels to 51 yards of total offense in the second half and benefited from a fumble rccoveiy by defensive tackle Willie Griffin at the Rebel 6-yard line. Husker I-back Ken Clark scored three plays later to give Nebraska a 28-0 lead. Osborne said he w as disappointed because neither the offense nor the defense appeared ready to play. He said partol lhc problem was the image the public and media gave the players regarding the competition level of UNLV. The Rebels were picked to finish last in the Big West Conference this season. “In fairness l<> the players, it's very hard to he real intense when you’ve been inundated all week w nil the idea that it won’t be any kind of a game at all,” Osborne said. Osborne said he was pleased Nc Osborne said ihe UNLV coaching staff should feel good about the Reb els’ effort. “When you lose you still feel bad, but at least you can be proud of the way you played,” he said. 7 think we blocked more poorly in this game than we have all year' —Osborne . •• '• * ..X' • . •• .. . .. . .>v> braska won the game despite the offense’s poor and inconsistent exe cution, but said he is concerned about the remainder of the season. “The good part was that we were a good enough team to win handily, but I don’t feel real comfortable about the future,” Osborne said. Osborne said some UNLV players indicated to him after the game that they played well against the Huskers. “I think they fell like they had given a good effort and done all they could,” he said. “They have some good athletes.” Sweep displeases Coach Wolforth By Mike Kluck Staff Reporter Nebraska’s double-header softball sweep of the University of Nebraska at Omaha was a team effort, Corn husker coach Ron Wolforth said. The Huskcrs, 7-1, defeated UNO 7-2 and 4-2 Friday night at the Ne braska Softball Complex, but the games wentdifferently than Wolforth wanted. ‘‘We slunk,” Wolforth said. ‘‘If we would have played a Division I lop 20 team we would have been embar rassed. . “I don’t think that I did a good enough job of preparing them. I think that is the key. I don’t think I was lough enough and firm enough on our preparation and I won't make that mistake again.” Wolforth’s statement was echoed by senior left fielder Jancllc Frcsc. Frcsc had four hits and five runs bat ted in during the two games, but wasn’t happy. “I myself was definitely not satis fied with a4-2 win and a 7-2 win over UNO,” Frese said. “Sure we did some See SWEEP on 10 Nebraska’s Jill Rishel successfully steals second bsse as UNO’s Lynn Zealand fields the throw Friday at the Nebraska Softball Complex. The Comhuskers swept a double-header against the Mavericks 7-2 and 4-2.