Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, Neb., Nov. 26 — Ed Weir and his big blonde boys fought their last battle under the flaming standard of Cornhuskerland this afternoon, and when they left the field forever a new climax had been written into the glorious Nebraska football epic. Two words and two numbers tell this climax. They are Nebraska 17, Notre Dame 0.
Victors over Notre Dame by the greatest margin in history, today’s team was the only Scarlet battalion that ever held the mighty and respected Rockne horde completely at bay. For not once was the Nebraska goal endangered.
Inspired by the words of Bearg, the boy coach who led them through the nerve-shattering season, the Cornhuskers played to victory against the fabled invincibles of Indiana as no other team ever played before them. The prairie giants who wore the Scarlet in the old days defeated Notre Dame, but the advantage was always gained by a small margin and after fierce and even warfare.
But no small margin was to satisfy Ed Weir and his big blonde boys. There were scores to settle, a humiliating defeat at South Bend last season to avenge. There was the task of tying the all-time record with Nebraska’s traditional foe. And while 45 thousand persons, the largest football throng ever assembled between Illinois stadium and the western coast looked on, Ed Weir and his veterans bade farewell by accomplishing all they set out to do.
Nebraska scored two touchdowns early in the first quarter, and Captain Ed Weir boosted the score to 14 when he made both points good from placement. Later, in the third quarter, Weir added three points by a field goal. The touchdowns were made by Choppy Rhodes and A. Mandery.
Tonight Nebraska of 1925 ranks well with the nation’s great teams, as the eleven that stopped Grange and defeated Illinois, that crushed Notre Dame under the greatest score in the history of the two schools’ rivalry, and tied the terrible Huskies, champions of the western domain.
Amid the shrilling and booming of the thousands five Cornhuskers passed from the college gridiron today. Ever since their first great triumph, against another great Notre Dame two years ago, they have been the speed, the power, the spirit and the brawn of the squad. Ed Weir, John Rhodes, Harold Hutchison, Joe Wostoupal and Roland Locke are gone, but they have left behind them youths who today matched their talents with the greatest and did not lose.
Early in the game the Notre Dame backs found it unwise to attempt to rip through Hutchison or Weir or Wostoupal, so they charged youthful, bulky Raish and then wondered — dazedly — how Ed Weir had shifted himself so suddenly. Ed hadn’t shifted. Big Raish had found himself, had become aware of his own power. Then the Blue clad gallants tore into Scholz, into the hard-boiled Stiner, into Pospisil. They were all alike. They were virtually impregnable.
So Notre Dame went into the air, for through the air have come many Notre Dame triumphs over Nebraska. The back, O’Boyle, sent the ball singing through the chill November breeze. A slight boy projected his body high and snared the ball. He raced 30 yards. The boy was Frank Mielenz and he wore Scarlet.
Apparently considering it a fluke, Notre Dame tried it again. Up shot slight, white-haired Frank Dailey, snatched the oval from a desperately lunging blue-jerseyed end and raced 20 yards. Still unconvinced, the Rockne backs tried it again. It was Jug Brown who intercepted this time.
Notre Dame, the famed passing eleven, completed but a single aerial gain. Others fell short, were broken up by alert Huskers, or were intercepted always for good gains.
Into the Rockne lineup at the start of the second half went Prelli, and for a period, short but painful to Nebraskans, he and his mates began a drive that pierced the wall for good gains. Then Ed Weir decided it had gone on long enough, and his jolly mates agreed. Forthwith they put a stop to the entire proceeding. Notre Dame’s rally failed to put them within striking distance. A drop kick was attempted. The ball fell harmlessly, and rolled into the end zone.
Not only good old “Choppy” Rhodes, but the young Messrs. Brown, Dailey, Mandery and Mielenz were able either brutally to wham their way through the opposing line or fool the desperate defense by kicking around ends or blithely tossing the ball far in the proper direction, certain that a mate would be there to receive it. And the mate always was.
Despite the splendid play of the departing veterans, it would be unfair to pick a single member of the squad and say that he was outstanding. First Harold the Hutch would break through to spill Hearnden or Enright. He received thunderous acclaim, but the next moment the multitude would be cheering the feat of the sophomore Raish or of the brawny stubborn West Pointer, Long Joe Wostoupal. First “Choppy” Rhodes would smash off tackle for a five-yard gain. He would be followed by Dailey, who matched the territory acquiring feat by skirting an end, or by Brown, or Mandery, who mixed their modes of advance.
Notre Dame, as its respected and able mentor declared both before and after the conflict, was travel weary and suffering from a season’s hard battering. There was no apparent difference in the ability of the “shock troops” against which Nebraska made its two touchdowns and the so-called “first string,” against which Nebraska scored a field goal and was on its way to a third touchdown when a penalty made impossible an almost certain fourth down.
But Notre Dame fought gallantly against a foe that was as superior as last year’s Rockne eleven was to the Cornhusker band that was ground beneath a score of 34 to 6 on the turf of South Bend.
Right after the kickoff the high spirited superiority of the Cornhuskers was evident. Just five plays were necessary by the Cornhuskers before the ball was across for the first touchdown. It all happened in less than four minutes. Like this:
Roach of Notre Dame kicked off and Weir immediately punted. Parisien, Notre Dame quarter, caught the ball on the five-yard line, where he was downed. Roach failed to gain. Notre Dame was penalized half the distance to its goal. Roach punted from behind his own goal line, and the ball was carried in a half circle by the north wind, which alternately gave the teams the advantage of kicking. The ball was downed on the Notre Dame seven-yard line. Rhodes smashed Fredericks, Notre Dame center, for two yards. Rhodes repeated for the same profit. Then Rhodes went wide around left end for the first touchdown. Ed Weir kicked the try for point.
Weir kicked off after the touchdown. Notre Dame could not gain and kicked back. The teams alternated at this style of play until near the close of the quarter. Then Weir punted over his own goal line and the ball was Notre Dame’s on its own 20-yard line. Rhodes stopped three Notre Dame assaults. Notre Dame kicked 29 yards to midfield. Rhodes circled left for 13 yards. Dailey went off tackle for three more. Rhodes tore center for another two.
Then Jug Brown tossed a pass to Avard Mandery, who wandered nimbly through a broken field for the second touchdown. The crowd couldn’t believe it for a moment. Here was Nebraska doing what everyone was certain Notre Dame would do – score through the air. Finally the crowd realized that it was so and paid its respects with gay disregard for sensitive auditory nerves.
Again Weir kicked goal.
All this was too much for Rockne. He dispatched what has become known as his first string into the fray, yanking the kids to the sidelines. The wounded Enright responded with the rest of the topliners.
But somehow or other the pesky, cocky Cornhuskers, whom every Notre Dame follower could easily see were playing over their heads, did not evince any more respect for these elders than they had for the youngsters.
When Nebraska got the ball the insistent Mr. Rhodes began his rushing and the boys who had beaten Minnesota, Georgia Tech and Northwestern were inconsiderately shoved back toward their own goal. At one time during the third period, when things were getting monotonous and the crowd for five minutes had not made any demonstration fainter than a deafening din, Captain Weir decided it was high time to please the thousand or so home folks who were there to see him monkeyshine. So with Jug Brown poising the oval at the proper angle, Mr. Weir propelled a placement from 25 yards. And it was good. And the score thereafter until the close of hostilities was 17 to 0.
Nebraska probably would have scored again in the fourth quarter had not Brother Eckersall, who was functioning as referee, decided they had taken too much time in getting into the proper poses for action. So Comrade Walter slapped on a five-yard penalty, and Nebraska had to make eight yards on two plays instead of three. Nebraska made the three on the third down and on the fourth Big Ed tried another kick, which lacked ambition.
The Cornhuskers, except for spurts when advantages loomed, played defensively during the final half. Maybe this was partly due to the short and unsuccessful rally that followed the introduction of Mr. Prelli into the affray. At any rate Notre Dame outdowned the victors, and got up a jolly good sweat doing it. But when there was any chance of getting into dangerous territory, Nebraska tightened, and conducted itself as it had while rolling up the early margin.
Nebraska is 8-7 all-time against Notre Dame.
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