Nebraska 7
Notre Dame 0

Oct. 20, 1917

Huskers Win the Rubber From Harper's Mastodons

Schellenberg, star Nebraska halfback, finds a big hole in the enemy's line through left tackle.

Otoupalik Scores Winning Touchdown for Red and White While Stewart Covers Up Trick Plays, McMahon and a Lot of Other Things.

Lincoln, Neb., Oct. 20. — Covering up everything except just enough to win, Doc Stewart’s Cornhuskers this afternoon trimmed the Notre Dame mastodons on a bleak and wind-swept field before a huge mob of raving enthusiasts, by the delicate margin of seven to nothing.

Otoupalik saw his name spelled correctly in a Lincoln paper for the first time and it cheered him up to such an extent that he went wild toward the middle of the second period and drove across the final line for the only touchdown of the game. Captain Shaw kicked goal.

Jesse Harper’s galaxy of harps and others from South Bend were outplayed in every department, which must have pleased them fully as much as an acute attack of inflammatory rheumatism. The Cornhuskers skinned Harper, 20 to 19, two years ago, and were themselves flayed, 20 to nix, last fall — so this was the deciding conflict, in a manner of speaking. Why Doc didn’t care to bring the big dogs out of the barn when the little dogs were keeping the wolf from the door.

All that these gumshoe experts will be able to take home is the firm conviction that Captain Ed Shaw’s crew is to be hard to get along with.

Nebraska Stingy in Uncovering for Scouts

It was an afternoon of straight football, with only a few forward flips attempted, possibly because of the high wind.

Nebraska sprung only a couple of tricks, one of which — a triple pass — succeeded twice. Even the stuff Stewart used on poor old Iowa Saturday was secreted from the enemy scouts, and neither Kellogg nor McMahon, two stellar backs, were permitted to enter the game.

This was a display of confidence on Doc Stewart’s part that caused considerable nervousness in the audience but since they all lived happily ever after, what’s the difference?

McMahon too good for Harper's Harps

As for this McMahon boy — it certainly is tough to be so good that the coach will never use you. His name was on every lip today, and yet Doc wouldn’t give the folks a slant at him, except in preliminary practice.

If he had seven such men as McMahon he would probably play the rest of his schedule with a male quartet. Kellogg, who raised so much deviltry with the Hawkeyes, was also called for, but wasn’t needed, as events transpired.

Phalen Torpedoed by Schellenberg

There were a few thrills such as cause young men to go bughouse and old ones to go home.

Late in the first period the ball well toward Nebraska’s goal when Dobson punted to Phalen. The Notre Dame captain, who is a woolly bear, came galloping down the thick field with impressive dispatch and cleverness, until finally there was nobody between him and the Husker goal.

At this painful juncture one Schellenberg broke out his spinnaker and set sail after the scampering enemy, running him down with eclat frost behind, and dirtying the South Bender in the dust on the 20-yard line.

Otoupalik Swats Line for Lone Touchdown

Johnny Cook, who otherwise was far from au fait during the day’s proceedings, in the second period caught a Notre Dame punt near the middle of the field and ran it back behind a splendid interference to the Notre Dame 15-yard line.

It was here that the Huskers sprung one of their very few tricks in their possession, uncorking a triple pass — Schellenberg to Cook to Rhodes, which took the oval to the South Bend 3-yard line.

Otoupalik then awaited the line twice, on the second attempt going over for the only touchdown of the combat. Shaw kicked out to Cook and then kicked goal. This left the score seven to nothing, as it remained.

On defense, with the exception of the unavoidable accidents which caused the crisis in the third period. Nebraska was simply too much for Notre Dam, the red and white line throwing the foe back in disorder time after time, and breaking up ambitious end runs and things with cheerful abandon.

Mister Harper’s children only made first down twice during the agony, while Nebraska achieved that glory many, many times.

Gipp was Gyped on his Drop Kick

There were several surprises popped during the fracas which served to enliven the afternoon and warm it up some, which it needed.

Notre Dame boasts possession of a gent named Gipp, who is no relation to Gyp the Blood, nor has any of his truculent characteristics. He came to Lincoln heralded as a drop kicker with a petrified toe, who could hoist that insignificant pigskin into the scoring column at any distance, with nothing but the street address of the goal to guide him.

Gipp met his opportunity during the earlier stanzas of the second period, when he stood on Nebraska’s 45-yard line, with a hurricane and Jesse Harper’s best wishes behind him.

He kicked the full 45 yards and then some — straight up in the air — and after a reasonable length of time had expired the ball finally came down and nestled cozily against the stomach of the greedy Mister Rhodes. Thus the Gipp bubble exploded, for it was his last chance.

Officials Suffer from Case of Hookworm

But in the last period, when the shades of night began to foretell the end of the struggle, one Dobson, who was never known to brag any about his drop kicking, stood in the identical spot previously graced by Mr. Gipp and boasted the most delightful drop, which swerved to the right of the goal by only a few feet and which nearly caused a riot of surprise and gratification. It was a big day for Dobson, Doc Stewart ought to take him to a good racket on the barn, and this came close to being one of those occasions.

Before the game began the crowd went wild when Captain Tim Corey — last year of the Cornhuskers, but now of the United States reserve — marched out at the head of the freshmen squad and put it through a snappy military drill. It must have been goose liver sausage for Captain Tim to see Notre Dame walloped, after what happened during the last year of his football regime at Lincoln.

Statistics of Game Show Husker Strength

Before delving into the details of the play, a few statistics will add something to a general squint at proceedings.

Nebraska gained 186 yards from scrimmage, as against Notre Dame’s 57. The Cornhuskers punted 10 times for 407 yards: Notre Dame punted 11 times for 405 yards. The penalties were 90 yards for Nebraska and 55 for Notre Dame.

The Cornhuskers have played three games this year and have yet to be scored upon, in the meantime they have scored 100 points against Wesleyan and 47 against Iowa.

More coverage

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Series history

Nebraska is 8-7 all-time against Notre Dame.

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1917 season (5-2)

Nebraska Wesleyan Oct. 6
Iowa Oct. 13
Notre Dame Oct. 20
Michigan Oct. 27
Missouri Nov. 10
Kansas Nov. 17
Syracuse Nov. 29

This day in history

Nebraska has played 19 games on Oct. 20. See them all »

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