Sluggish football under gray skies and with steadily decreasing temperature marked the second event of Saturday’s double-header at Rourke park, when Nebraska’s Cornhuskers were able only to eke out a 7-7 tie with Oklahoma. The Huskers scored in the second period and the Sooners in the fourth, and it must be admitted that the final result was fairly representative of the merits of both teams.
Being the first game played by Nebraska in Omaha for ten years, it is possible that more was expected of Coach Schulte’s men than was proper, but the fact remains that the Huskers displayed nothing that entitles them to do anything in the way of laurels, and that the only gent who seemed to know how to entertain the vast throng was Arlo Davis, the busy Oklahoma quarterback.
Mister Davis accomplished the Oklahoma touchdown after a twenty-five yard run, criss-crossed through the very center of a field full of enemies, and afterward kicked his own goal. In this tying the score he did not complete his work of the day, for before and after that event he was always in the spotlight. He did all the punting for the Sooners, and did it well. He was the only man on either team who seemed to have the pep that makes a football match worth looking at—and to watch him work was to regret that the Huskers didn’t have a Chamberlain or a Rutherford or a Frank or Pardy to take his place on the opposite side of the line.
For Nebraska, it must be admitted, there were no stars. Neither was there any brilliancy developed except in the usual bulldog courage of the Cornhusker, who held the Gophers to a tie and which for years has maintained a defense feared by every eleven in the nation. Captain Dobson’s men, and the captain himself, fought desperately against a team that itself expect nothing more than an honorable defeat, and what he did in the way of punting is ample evidence that his foot was in his work.
Davis kicked off for Oklahoma, and pretty soon Dobson punted right back at him. Dobson is some punter. He demonstrated that with his lofty and elusive spiral—which were the principal reason that Nebraska was not beaten yesterday, instead of being tied.
P. Johnson of Oklahoma intercepted a pass heaved by Dobson and lugged it back for fifteen yards. Boyle passed to Tyler for about a fathom. After a series of punts, with the ball close to the center of the field, Captain Dobson started out on a joyride through left tackle, but skidded on a greasy turn when he was well on his way. So, eventually, he had to kick, which he did with great eclat. Davis promptly punted back, forty yards, out of bounds, and Brer Dobson came back with a forty-five-yard splash through left tackle, one of the Huskers’ most spectacular feats of the day. He was downed on the Nebraska fifteen-yard line and Oklahoma was penalized five yards on the next chapter.
But the Huskers simply couldn’t do it, through fumbles and incompleted forward passes. McGlasson, during this sad series of events, made an heroic recovery of a fumble, and the Nebraska mob finally lost the ball on downs within what would have been the shadow of their opponents’ goal—had there been any shadows. Davis kicked out thirty yards and Schellenberg brought the little oval darling back twenty before he was mashed into the cloying clay of Pa Rourke’s justly celebrated playground.
Thus ended the first period, with the ball in Nebraska’s possession less than ten yards away from the target. Captain Dobson sneaked around left end for seven yards and then Quarterback McGlasson gouged himself through the line for a touchdown—the only one that Schulte’s men were able to amass during the whole zero afternoon.
McGlasson kicked out to Schellenberg and Day kicked goal. Wasn’t that cute? It had to be—for it was the only score the Cornhuskers made on October 25, 1919.
Dobson kicked off to Bechtold, who brought the leather back fifteen yards. Davis passed successfully to Tyler for a thirty-yard sprint, and it was Oklahoma’s ball on Nebraska’s forty-yard line. Davis punted over the line after other futile attempts at ground gaining, and Dobson punted back. Then the Sooners began to get more pep into their open game, and a couple of forward heaves got some ground. Eventually Davis chucked the oval to R. Johnson for a forty-yard run—and it was certainly a dandy throw. Now it was Oklahoma’s ball on Nebraska’s seven-yard line.
At this critical juncture Kellogg recovered Bechtold’s fumble on the Husker five-yard line and it didn’t take Cap Dobson long to punt forty yards out of danger to McDermott. An exchange of footwork then ensued, and pretty soon Bechtold varied the monotony by intercepting a pass by Wright, on Nebraska’s forty-five-yard line. More punts came to pass, and now the first half was tooted to be over. The ball was in the center of the field and the score 7 to 0 in favor of Nebraska.
At the opening of the third period, second half, Davis kicked off to McGlasson, who came back twenty yards. Dobson punted forty-five yards and out of bounds, Oklahoma electing to put the ball in play on its ten-yard line, instead of kicking out. Oklahoma here made first down, a rather unusual event during the afternoon, for either team. But the Sooners had to kick, and Lyman blocked Davis’ boot, the ball being recovered by Hubka, on Oklahoma’s five-yard line.
Schellenberg charged through to the one-yard line, but Cap Dobson couldn’t get over. This was the Huskers’ golden opportunity. Nothing doing! Oklahoma’s ball on downs! Davis punted away from disaster to McGlasson.
Here Dobson tried one of his long dropkicks, but it failed for the lack of distance. It was perfectly directed and only lacked a little speed. The Nebraska captain was standing on the thirty-five-yard line when he swung his toe.
Again Davis put the ball in the play by punting, this time from his twenty-yard line. The Huskers found themselves with the oval close to their bosom, and in the center of the field. Dobson tried another long dropkick, again perfectly aimed, but short, and it was caught by the omnipresent Mr. Davis.
As was a habit with this bird Davis, he kicked some more. This time Schellenberg fumbled, and the ball was grabbed up by the busy young Tyler of the oil fields. On the next play the Huskers were penalized five yards. On about the next play, Davis, the usually reliable hero, himself dropped the ball and Lyman pounced upon it, in the center of the arena. This ended the third siesta.
So here comes the last and most painful period of the gentle pastime.
Oklahoma was penalized fifteen yards and Davis did another punt—again to McGlasson. The ball was now deep in Nebraska territory, and the Huskers, to add to their misery, were penalized five yards. But things were evened up when the Sooners were nicked for fifteen yards, and it was Oklahoma’s ball on Nebraska’s twenty-five-yard line.
Here came the only piece of real football running of the whole second session of the big doubleheader.
Davis took the ball, and on a criss-cross tango jazz-trot through the whole Husker team, went over the line for a touchdown.
It was a beautiful piece of work, and deserves honorable mention, especially in the dismal light of such mediocrity.
To make his conquest doubly good, Brer Davis then kicked his own goal.
Score—Nebraska 7, Oklahoma 7.
Nebraska is 38-45 all-time against Oklahoma.
|Notre Dame||Oct. 18|
|Iowa State||Nov. 1|
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