The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, November 02, 1992, Page 8&9, Image 8

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Big-game troubles evaporate;
Huskers rout Colorado 52-7
By Nick Hytrek
Senior Reporter
4- Sometime during the fourth quar
ter of the Ncbraska-Colorado game,
you could hear the chains breaking —
the chains that have held the monkey
on the Nebraska football team’s back.
The monkey that said the
Cornhuskcrs couldn’t win the big
game, couldn’t beat a Top 10 team.
But glowing in the mist and the
darkness at Memorial Stadium Satur
day night, the numbers on the
scoreboard set free the Huskcrs and
the 76,287 dripping fans in atten
dance: Nebraska 52, Colorado 7.
“It’s nice to finally win the so
called big one,” I-back Calvin Jones
said. “I think this is going to give
Nebraska a big boost for the games
down the road and the rest of the Big
“To go out and beat them like we
did took a lot of the burden off our
shoulders, hearing every week that
we can T go out and w in the big game,”
comerback Kenny Wilhite said.
Fullback Lance Lewis summed it
up in simpler terms.
, 1 “Just beating them this bad is just
\great,” he said.
(Also broken during the game was
Colorado’s 25-game unbeaten streak
in Big Eight play.
And maybe, Husker coach Tom
Osborne said, the win broke the string
of criticism that followed his defense
into the game.
“I really want to mention our de
fense,” he said. “I think they’ve been
maligned somewhat here lately, some
what unjustly and maybe somewhat
Last week against Missouri, the
Husker defense gave up 424 yards
passing, the most ever against Ne
But against Colorado, the defense
gave up only 136 yards through the air
and 144 total.
“We told (the players) to back up a
bit and not give up the big ball and we
didn’t do that,” Osborne said. “We
wanted to keep them in front of us and
make them pay for everything they
got and make them work their way
down the field.”
Also key, Osborne said, were the
six turnovers the Huskers forced. Ne
braska had no turnovers.
“Turnovers make you look bad,”
Osborne said. “Colorado is a better
football team than what they showed
today, but the turnovers just make you
look like you’re not getting anything
Thanks to a fired-up Husker de
fense, the No. 8 Buffaloes, now 6-1 -1,
2-,l-l in the Big Eight, didn’t get
anything done.
Outside linebacker Travis Hill
wasn’t surprised wiLh the defensive
“I knew they were going to have a
hard time passing because of the
weather. If you don’t have a good
running game when the weather’s like
this you can’t throw the ball 50-some
times to win the game,” he said.
One of the reasons for the defense’s
success, Osborne said, was pressure
on the quarterback.
“I think the big key to our pass
defense was our pressure,” he said. “If
we didn’t sack the quarterback, we
were rushing him most of the time.”
And that rushing made a differ
ence, Hill said. Especially against
freshman Koy Detmer.
“A quarterback is different once he
gets pressure,” Hill said. “If you hit
him every play, then he’s going to
start feeling it after a while and then
he starts feeling the heat and he just
starts throwing it up for grabs.”
And that’s exactly what happened
in Detmer’scase. The freshman com
~ 44
To go out and beat
them like we did took
a lot of the burden off
our shoulders.
NU cornerback
-99 -
plcicd only 9 of 26 passes for 119
yards and three interceptions.
“We were after him," Hill said.
“We were going to put a message in
his mind that we were coming and we
were coming every play.
“I think he was gelling rattled.”
The No. 8 Huskcrs rattled Colo
rado from the first play of the game to
raise their record to 6-1, 3-0.
Hill intercepted a Detmer pass and
returned it to the Buffalo 15-yard line.
Four plays later, Jones scored from
three yards out and Nebraska had a 7
0 lead.
The interception gave the Huskcrs
a big boost, Wilhite said.
“It gave us a lot of momentum,” he
said. “I got goosebumps.”
Midway through the
second quarter,
Huskcr fans were
given reason to get
goosebumps of
their own after
Jones ripped
through the Buffalo defense for a 47
yard score and a 14-0 Nebraska lead.
Jones finished the day with 101 yards
on 21 carries. The other half of the
Huskcr I-back duo, Derek Brown,
rushed for 80 yards on 20 carries.
After a Steve Carmcr interception
on Colorado’s next possession gave
Nebraska the ball on the Buffalo 36,
the Huskcrs drove to the I before
settling for a 24-yard Byron Bennet
field goal. ;__
On Colorado’s next possession,
Detmer and the Buffalo offense fi
showed up. Operating out of the no
huddle offense, the Buffaloes drove
81 yards in 12 plays to cut the Husker
lead to 17-7 after James Hill’s 3-yard
touchdown run.
The Buffaloes got the ball back
with 1:49 to go until halftime, but
Travis Hill stripped the ball from
Detmer and recovered it at the Colo
rado 27.
The Huskers took it down to the 1
and with one second left, Jones scored
his third touchdown of the day and
Nebraska had a 24-7 lead at halftime.
That score enabled Nebraska to
take the momentum into halftime,
Jones said.
“If they would have stopped us
then maybe they would have come
out with the momentum in the third
quarter,” he said. “By scor
ing on the last play of the
second quarter, I think that
really took some of
the heal out of
the balloon for
Still, Ne
braska players
weren’t at ease
with the 17-point
“You never feel safe at halftime,”
Wilhitc said. “You just try to give the
same effort you gave in the first half.
You don’t let up and that’s what we
said: don’t let up.”
And the Huskers didn’t.
A 5-yard touchdown pass from
Tommie Fra/.icr to Gerald Armstrong
in the third quarter pul Nebraska up
31-7. From there, things only got worse
for Colorado.
Nebraska kept the ball on the
ground and wore down the Buffalo
“Colorado’s defense was on the
licld so much,” Osborne said.
“They’ve got a great defensive foot
ball team but you can only take so
much pounding and they had to take a
lot of it.”
Jones also said he thought
Nebraska wore
^ the
Buffaloes oul.
“Fatigue played a big factor in the
game,” he said. “As the game went on,
they just wore down.”
Nebraska wore Colorado down for
three more touchdowns in the fourth
quarter and the only question to be
answered was how long it would lake
the fans to tear down the goal posts.
“It worked out our way this lime,”
Osborne said. “We’re pleased we won
it like we did.”
And all talk of a rivalry with Colo
rado can cease, Hill said.
“I wouldn’t say it’s a rivalry,” Hill
said. “I think thingsarc back to normal
Michelle Paulman/DN
Old memories haunting
for Figures, CU seniors
By John Adkisson
Senior Editor __
A rain-soaked Dcon Figures sat alone on the
Colorado bench Saturday just after Nebraska
scored its seventh touchdown.
He looked into the stands, where red-clad
Cornhusker fans were already celebrating the
52-7 Nebraska victory.
And maybe, he thought, things hadn’t
changed after all.
“I sal down there on the bench all by myself
when I was a freshman and we lost 7-0 (in
1988),” Figures said. “It seems like right now
it’s a re-creation, except this loss feels much
worse than the other one ever was.
“When I was out on the field, I was pinching
myself to see if I would wake up, if it was a
dream,” he said. “But sure enough, it was
reality. Nebraska whooped our ass.”
Figures, a senior corncrback, was part of a
Buffalo defense that gave up 428 yards and 52
points to Nebraska — the most points a Colo
rado team has surrendered since a 52-7 loss at
Missouri in 1984.
The game was also a missed chance for
Figures and his senior teammates to beat Ne
braska for the third lime in four years.
“Now I’ve got to sit here and tell my kids —
my grandkids, even — that the last time I
played Nebraska, I lost,” he said. “That’s some
thing I can’t get back. It’s over. It’s done.”
The week before, Colorado had routed Kan
sas State 54-7. But the loss to Nebraska ended
the Bullalocs’ 25-game Big Eight unbeaten
streak and was the Cornhuskers’ first win over
Colorado since 1988.
“It’s weird. It’s really weird. We’ve been
blowing people out and now we got blown out,”
Figures said. “I guess this gives you a taste of
how they feel.”
Figures said Saturday’s game was decided
early, when the Buffalo offense gave Nebraska
good field position to start the game.
The Huskcrs started four first-half drives in
Colorado territory — at the Buffalo 15,36,47
and 27 yard lines. Nebraska turned three of
those possessions into points, and built a 24-7
halftime lead that all but iced the game.
“When you’ve got running backs like Calvin
Jones and Derek Brown, and they’ve got field
position like that,” Figures said,“that’sjust like
throwing a piece of meat in a lion’s den.”
It got no better for CU in the second half.
Freshman quarterback Koy Dctmer couldn’t \
escape a swarming Nebraska defense, and the V"
Buffaloes weren’t able to manage a first down
in the third quarter.
As a result, Figures and the rest of the
Colorado defense were on the field for 46
minutes of the game and wore down in the
second half.
“It’s humiliating,” Figures said. “I’ve been
playing football since I was seven and I’ve
never gotten beaten this bad.”
“I have to give (Nebraska) credit tonight,”
he said. “They earned my credit tonight, and
they haven’t earned my credit since I’ve been
at Colorado.”
Al Schaben/DN
_i__ a_i. «.
Michelle Paulman/DN
Scoring by Quarters 12 3 4
Color ado 0 7 0 0
Nebraska 7 17 7 21
NU-Jones, 3 yd. run (Bennett kick)
NU-Jones, 47 yd. run (Bennett kick) * ?
field goal yft/j
CIMfill, 3yd. run (Berger kick)
NU-Jones, 1 yd. mn (Bennett kick)
NU-Armstrong, 5 yd. pass from Frazier (Bennett kick)
NU-Uwis, 34yd. run (Bennettkick) hi
NU-Washington, 1 yd. pass Iran Frazier (BenapjtSick)
NU~Sdilesinger, 5 yd. run
vii/unwiou iiuiii lUp lull.
NU strong safety Steve Carmer
grabs a Koy Detmer pass during
the first half as free safety Tyrone
Byrd backs him up.
NU quarterback Tommie Frazier
outruns CU’s Ron Woolfork dur
ing the third quarter. ■' — - —
Husker fans bring down the goal
posts following NU’s 52-7 vic
tory over Colorado. The win
snapped NU’s eight-game skid
against Top 10 opponents.
NU players Kenny Wilhite (19),
Ernie Beler (23), Steve Carmer
(31) and Ed Stewart (32) cel
ebrate Carmer’s second quarter
CU’s T.J. Cunningham bobbles
the opening kickoff.