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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (April 27, 1998)
After making it through his first
spring as Nebraska’s head coach,
Frank Solich reflected upon the
“1 enjoyed it, and I felt comfort
able,’’ he said. “You learn as you go
along. Sometimes I would get so
involved in the play in front of me
that I couldn’t remember what hap
pened the last play.
“I’d like to have another spring.
So much of the job is off the field -
dealing with the press and the boost
ers and things. I like that, but there is
no question that I like being on the
field with the players the best.’’
Nebraska set a new attendance
record for a spnng game with 60,498
"I think that’s tremendous when
you consider that this game was tele
vised,” Solich said.
“But that’s the way the fans have
always been here. They’ve always
been supportive, and the players and
coaches appreciate that.
Nebraska didn't escape
Saturday's game without a few
injuries. No. 1 left offensive tackle
Adam Julch tore two major liga
ments in his ankle and had surgery to
repair them Sunday. No. 2 right
offensive tackle Jeff Clausen broke a
bone in his left hand at the end of the
first half. Both are expected to be out
for about two months.
Solich was concerned about the
injuries, which deplete an already
inexperienced offensive line.
“It's really a blow in terms of the
offensive line," Solich said. “We're
not deep or experienced in those
positions and it's tough."
Other minor injuries included
sophomore middle linebacker
Carlos Polk and sophomore defen
sive tackle Luis Almanzar. who re
aggrav ated ankle sprains, and sopho
more 1-back DeAngelo Evans, who j
rolled las right ankle in the first half.
Evans, who missed all of last season
and winter conditioning with a
pelv ic injury, said he expected to be
at full strength in two weeks.
Two kickers are vying to replace
departed senior Jesse Kosch as NU's
No. 1 punter.
Junior Dan Hadenfeldt averaged
46.7 yards on three punts and hit a
42-yard field goal Saturday. Bill
Lafleur, the Huskers No. 1 punter
going into spring practice, averaged
42.3 yards on six punts. Lie also had
a punt blocked by sophomore free
safety Clint Finley.
Former NU players Scott Frost,
Grant Wistrom and Matt Hoskinson
were honored in a pre-game ceremo
Frost, an NFL third-round draft
pick, won the Tom Novak Trophy,
given annually to the senior who
“exemplifies courage and determi
Two-time All-American and
first-round draft pick Wistrom
received the Guy Chamberlain
Trophy for his overall contribution to
the football program. Hoskinson, the
offensive line’s sixth man last year,
won the Native Son Award, given to
a Nebraska native who shows leader
ship and a good work ethic.
Red-White Spring Game
Notebook compiled by Senior
Reporter Shannon Heffelfinger
Quarterback verdict comes today
team in rushing
in spring game
By Shannon Heffelfinger
Frankie London, Bobby
Newcombe and Eric Crouch all present
ed their cases for the No. 1 quarterback
job Saturday during Nebraska's annual
Red-White Spring Game.
But after watching each of the quar
terbacks shine in their final test of the
spring, NU Coach Frank Solich said the
jury is still out as to who won the spot for
At least until today.
Solich and Cornhusker
Quarterbacks Coach Turner Gill will
grade the quarterbacks' individual play
during the spring game and also will
review the play of the quarterbacks in
NU's three previous scrimmages before
making a decision.
“Until I look at films, I think you're
going to find me a pretty boring coach."
Solich said. “I'm not going to make
comments about a good play or a bad
play until I've had a chance to look at the
film. But I will say I did see a lot of good
things from all three quarterbacks.
“Certainly there were some big, big
plays made by our quarterbacks, and
ill in I II Miimiiiii —3T5-w
that will be taken into consideration.”
Newcombe cut left and coasted 91
yards against the No. 2 defense for a
touchdown on the White team’s second
play of the scrimmage. Newcombe, list
ed as the No. 2 quarterback before
spring practices, played on both the Red
and White teams and guided them to
five of NU s seven scoring drives.
Newcombe, who played wingback
last season, led both teams in rushing,
gaining 175 yards on 13 carries. He
completed 4 of 9 passes for 64 yards,
including a 43-yard touchdown pass to
Casey Vanderhoef with 1:29 remaining
in the first quarter.
“I feel like I make a lot of big plays,”
Newcombe said. “That's always been
my talent. Now that I'm feeling more
comfortable with the offense, I can use
the system to make big plays.”
London and Crouch also said they
were pleased with their performances.
London led two scoring drives and
rushed for 68 yards on 17 carries. The
junior completed 3 of 7 passes for 28
“I think on my part, 1 bnng the entire
package,” London said. “I can throw and
I can think, and that's what you want.”
Crouch gained 48 yards on 16 car
ries and connected on 3 of 6 pass
attempts for 52 yards. Crouch entered
the race as the No. 5 quarterback after
redshirting last season but emerged in
the last two scrimmages as a legitimate
contender for the starting spot.
“It took me some time to learn the
offense.” Crouch said. “Running with
the (No. 1 offense) helped make me a
better player, and 1 feel more confident
going into the summer than I did.”
London also said he felt confident
about his play Saturday.
"I'm not at all disappointed in how 1
played," London said. “1 made some
mistakes, but nobody’s perfect."
None of the quarterbacks would
offer any guesses as to who might win the
position, but Gill hinted that certain big
plays may weigh heavily in the decision.
“All three of them helped their
cause," Gill said, “but it is very impor
tant to see a young man make some
plays. We'll take that into consideration.
“When a young man gets into posi
tions, he has to make a big play out of it.
That's something you can’t coach, and
it's something you can't teach.
Definitely, Bobby has that ability to
make a big play out of something that
may not be there."
Gill also said that he would like to
have two of three quarterbacks on the
field at the same time, which means the
coaches will likely ask someone to
All three quarterbacks said that they
didn't want to give up signal-calling
duties but would accept a position
change for the good of the team.
”1 don't want to be a backup quar
terback for two years," London said.
“My best option would be to change
positions and get on the field in some
“I'll be happy with whatever deci
sion they make,” Newcombe said. “I
don’t want to give up quarterback, but I
want to know if I have to so I can have
the whole summer to prepare for what
ever I’m playing.”
- — ^ „ Maai■»» loapmae - — -T-W^—■aaMi-iff-.-n.- --MMES-1
l-BACK DAN ALEXANDER gives a straight arm as he tries to fight off the tackle of left rush end Chad Kelsay during
Saturday’s Red-White Spring Game. Alexander had seven carries for 21 yards and a touchdown.
The waiting game
Though the Nebraska football team ended spring practice Saturday, a starting
quarterback has yet to be named. NU Coach Frank Solich said a decision will
likely be made today.
Red-White Spring Game totals:
Carries Yds. Avg. TD Att/Comp. Yds. TD
Bobby Newcombe 13 175 13.5 1 4/9 64 1
Frankie London 17 68 4.0 1 3/7 28 1
Eric Crouch 16 48 3.0 0 3/6 52 0
Three full spring scrimmage totals:
Carries Yds. Avg. TD Att/Comp. Yds. TD
Bobby Newcombe 36 203 5.6 2 10/23 107 1
Frankie London 36 117 3.3 2 10/23 121 2
Eric Crouch 26 53 2.0 0 8/21 157 0
i imm*w a *m
NU COACH FRANK SOUCH sends in a
play with sophomore split end Matt
Davison Saturday during the annual
Red-White Spring Game.
Softball team claims Big 12 title
■ With a doubleheader sweep of
Oklahoma, the Huskers end their
season undefeated in league play.
By Darren Ivy
All the seventh-ranked Nebraska women’s soft
ball team had to do to win the Big 12
Championship was win one game against No. 5
Oklahoma Saturday in Norman, Okla. - a feat that
no other team had accomplished this year in
NU not only took one game, but swept both
games 5-3 and 6-3 to claim the Big 12
Sunday’s games against Oklahoma State were
rained out and will not be made up. NU finished
first in the league with a perfect 16-0 conference
“This is the first step on the ladder where we
want to go,” said pitcher Jenny Voss, who won both
games on the mound. “We accomplished our first
goal. We still have a few more steps to go.”
Voss’ pitching, senior Ali Viola’s grand slam
home run, sophomore Jennifer Lizama’s defense
and freshman Jamie Fuente’s offense helped
Nebraska win its first conference title since 1988.
Coach Rhonda Revelle said she expected a bat
tle from the Sooners, 43-12.
“Both teams knew what was at stake,” Revelle
said. “There was a lot of excitement. You could tell
it was going to be close.”
NU, 38-10, trailed OU 2-1 going into the top of
the fifth inning in the first game.
Then the rally started.
Freshman Jessica Draemel and Voss singled.
That was followed by a Fuente single, which loaded
the bases for Viola, NU’s top home run hitter.
Right on cue, the senior hit her school-record
17th home run to take the wind out of OU’s sails.
“I’ve come up with some big hits throughout
my career, but that probably was the biggest,” Viola
said. “The conference championship was some
thing we’ve wanted for a long time, and we really
wanted to get that first game.”
OU threatened in the seventh inning, but
Lizama came up with a big defensive play. Revelle
said Lizama put a dead stop to the Oklahoma rally
“Her defense is incredible,” Voss said. “She can
change a game with the stop of a ball. It makes my
job easier. It’s not like I’m out there winning by
Rain forced Sunday’s games in Stillwater,
Okla., to be canceled, which disappointed the
“We really wanted to play,” Viola said. “There
are 18 conference games, but we will settle for 16
After a day of reflecting on the championship,
Voss still couldn’t believe it.
“The more I think about it, I’m like, ‘Wow,’”
Voss said. “It’s amazing. (The Big 12 has) six teams
ranked in the top 25, and we went undefeated.”
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