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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 20, 1997)
NU blasts Tigers,
Improves to 11-5
By Mitch Sherman
If only they all could be this easy.
The Nebraska basketball team
slaughtered Missouri 76-53 Saturday
night, finishing a perfect four-game
home-stand in which the Comhuskers
hope they set the tone for an imposing
portion of the Big 12 Conference sea
son on the horizon.
“We thought if we were going to
have a decent year, we were going to
have to win some home games,” NU
Coach Danny Nee said after the Husk
ers handed the Tigers their worst loss
of the season before a crowd of 13,159
at the Bob Devaney Sports Center and
a national-television audience on
“Two weeks ago, we were looking
at four big games, and we didn’t take
any of them for granted. But I felt we
got stronger as we went along.”«
Saturday night, Nee said, Nebraska
(11-5 and 3-1 in the Big 12) turned in
its strongest performance of the sea
son, out-scoring MU 53-19 during one
stretch and holding the Tigers to a 27.4
Suddenly, the Huskers appear
poised to make their presence felt in a
league turned upside down by Colo
rado, which handed Nebraska its only
Please see MEN on 8
\ Scott Bruhn/DN
LARRY FLORENCE goes up for a tip as
Missouri* lyron Loo defends in NO*
76-53 win on Saturday.
DeForge’s big day
By Mike Kluck
COLUMBIA, Mo. — Nebraska
used a slumping Missouri women’s
basketball team to help pull some of
its players out of a midseason funk.
Four Comhuskers got on track with
a combination of season, career and
school-best performances in the 82-66
win over the Tigers before a crowd of
1,400 at the Heames Center.
NU improved to 13-1 overall and
3-1 in the Big 12 Conference. The
Huskers are tied for the North Divi
sion lead with Colorado, and will play
Missouri again Wednesday night at the
Bob Devaney Sports Center. The Ti
gers (6-11,0-5) lost their seventh con
Forward Anna DeForge scored a
career-best 31 points to lead the Husk
ers to their fourth straight win.
Although suffering from a cold,
DeForge, a 5-foot-11 junior from
Niagara, Wis., scored 21 of the Husk
ers’ 45 first-half points.
Her previous high was 29 points
earlier this season against Southwest
Texas State. DeForge scored her 30th
and 31st point on a layup with 1:04
left in the game.
“I have to credit my points to my
teammates because they were laying
Please see WOMEN on 8
Nelson Barnes is
hired as the Nebraska’s
rush ends coach.
By Mike Kluck
Ever since Turner Gill returned to
Nebraska five years ago as full-time
assistant coach he has looked forward
to the opportunity to work with Nelson
They will get the chance after
Barnes was hired to coach NU’s rush
ends Friday afternoon. Barnes, who
spent three seasons as the defensive
line coach at Texas, fills the vacancy
left by Tony Samuel’s departure to
New Mexico State.
Gill and Barnes became friends
while they were both coaching at
North Texas in 1989. After that sea
son Gill returned to Nebraska as a
graduate assistant and eventually be
came the quarterbacks coach in 1992.
“We’ve been good friends ever
since we worked together at North
Texas,” Gill said. “Our faith and Chris
tianity have kept us close friends. We
kept in contact with each other
throughout the years.”
During the past few years Gill said
he and Barnes have talked about
Barnes possibly coaching at Nebraska.
But since Barnes, a native of Alvin,
Texas, became the Longhorns’ defen
sive line he kept telling Gill he would
probably stay at Texas.
“We even talked at the beginning
of this year and I told him you never
know what will happen,” Gill said.
“But he said he would probably re
main at UT because he was close to
After Samuel’s departure, Gill said
Nebraska interviewed three candidates
who didn’t work out. He talked with
Barnes again and this time the 38-year
old said he was interested.
“Nebraska, from his perspective, is
a step to one of the best programs in
the country,” Gill said. “He has always
admired Nebraska and couldn’t pass
up on the opportunity to coach with
one of the best coaches around the
country. At this particular time in his
career, as a coach, this is the right move
for him to do.”
NEBRASKA 118-POUNDER Darin Giese wrestles Iowa’s Jessie Whitmer Saturday during the National Duals.
NU happy with seventh
go 3-2 over the
weekend at National
It was an up and down week
end for the Nebraska wrestling
team as the Comhuskers finished
seventh in the Cliff Keen National
NU, ranked 13th in the nation,
defeated Big 12 Conference rival
Oklahoma 22-12 in the seventh
place match Sunday afternoon at
the NU Coliseum to finish 3-2 for
the weekend. Oklahoma State
won the duals with a 21-13 vic
tory over top-rated Iowa.
Minnesota finished third, Penn
State fourth, Michigan State fifth
and Iowa State finished sixth in
the final duals in Lincoln.
Coach Tim Neumann said he
was pleased with how NU re
sponded throughout the weekend.
“We wrestled a lot sharper in
our last matches than we did in
our first few,” Neumann said. “I
think we made some improve
ment as the tournament went on.”
The duals were filled with nu
merous highs and lows for NU.
High: Nebraska winning its
opening dual against 21 st-ranked
North Carolina. Heavyweight
Tolly Thompson, ranked fourth in
the country, defeated rival and No.
2 Justin Harty to help NU win the
dual 19-16. Thompson will likely
move ahead of Harty—who beat
Thompson at last year’s NCAA’s
— in the rankings.
Low: A 40-3 pasting at the
hands of Iowa, in which three NU
wrestlers got pinned, and Ne
braska went into the heavyweight
match before winning any points.
“We should never lose by 37
points,” Thompson said. “They
just completely took the wind out
of our sails.”
High: Eliminating 16th
ranked Fresno State with a 24-12
victory Saturday. The Huskers
won five of the last six matches
to beat the Bulldogs.
Low: NU lost its fourth dual
22-10 to No.4 Penn State, but the
dual was more significant for Th
ompson. He lost 3-1 to the
nation’s top-ranked heavyweight
Kerry McCoy in overtime.
“I relaxed a little bit at the edge
of the mat, and he got me,” Th
ompson said. “I actually think
we’re pretty even.”
High: Sunday, against Okla
homa, the Huskers fell behind 12
6, but rallied with 16 points in die
last four matches —including a
forfeit at 190 — to win 22-12.
“I thought we fought back well
against Oklahoma,” Neumann
said. “Sophomore Monte
Christensen at 167, and freshman
Charles McTorry at 177 really ar
rived and did a great job.”
Nebraska (9-4) has a distant
chance to move into the top 10
after the weekend, but 134-pound
junior Brad Canoyer said the
Huskers are not at the level of
Iowa or Oklahoma State yet.
“We’re getting a lot better,” he
said, “But there’s still one more
step to go, and we’ve got to take
By David Wilson
Jon Rutherford, a lineman from
Midwest City, Okla., has become the
19th player to accept a scholarship to
play football at Nebraska.
The 6-foot-4, 265-pounder helped
Midwest City High School win two
state championships in Oklahoma’s
Midwest City went undefeated in
1994 and 1995 before losing in the
championship game to Jenks High
School 28-17 last season.
Rutherford, who has qualified aca
demically, finished with a 39-3 record
in his high school career—experienc
ing all three losses last season — two
of which he missed with a stress frac
ture in his right knee.
Rutherford visited Nebraska on
Jan. 10. He was impressed.
It was 100 times better than 1
thought it would be, and I heard it was
real good,” Rutherford said.
A visit to the Rutherford home by
Coach Tom Osborne last Tuesday
played a major role in his decision. He
chose NU over Colorado, Oklahoma,
Baylor and Miami.
Midwest City Coach Brian
Vaverka said Rutherford, who runs a
4.9-second 40-yard dash, is agile for
his size. But he controls his opponents
with raw power, his coach said.
“He’s very physical,” Vaverka said.
“If he gets on you, he’s got you.”
Rutherford was one of three play
ers from his school recruited by NU.
Offensive lineman DeVane
Robinson said he committed to Kan
sas State on Friday. Running Back Eric
Gooden was unavailable for comment
- In other recruiting news, defensive
back Brandon Harrison may be close to
a decision. Harrison, from Gainesville,
Texas, played in 1995 at Blinn (Texas)
Junior College. The 5-11,180-pounder,
is also considering Texas A&M, and
currently attends Garden City (Kan.)
Community College. \
He visited Lincoln last weekend,
and Osborne, along with Assistant
Turner Gill, will visit his parents in
Gainesville this afternoon, Harrison’s
mother, Deloris Harrison, said Sunday.
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